Loss of routine and social isolation are having distressing short and long-term impacts on individuals of all age groups, meaning mental health disorders will increase as a result of COVID-19. However, social media and collaboration tools are going some way to ease the isolation, says GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.
Shabnam Pervez, analyst at Thematic Research, comments: “As COVID-19 continually spreads and national lockdowns take effect, the impact on childrens’ and adults’ mental health is increasing. Research has found that individuals with pre-existing mental disorders will be more susceptible to relapse or worsening of their symptoms during the COVID-19 outbreak. A UK mental health charity reported that 80% of those with mental disorder have reported worsening of their symptoms, with 26% of individuals still unable to access support.
“While social media has been used to spread misinformation during the COVID-19 outbreak, it has also proven to be an important tool for the millions of users around the world that have effectively been quarantined, according to GlobalData. Applications like WhatsApp, Facebook and Houseparty are becoming increasing popular as a means of keeping connected whilst respecting social distancing. Social media can enable individuals to more easily confide in one-another, providing a level of mental health support that is not accessible in real life settings. According to GlobalData, the use of social media will remain high throughout the COVID-19 outbreak, particularly in areas that are under lockdown, for both social interaction and entertainment. ”