In the past one-and-a-half year, the impact of COVID-19 has not just been the obvious physical one. It has been, and is still having a huge impact on people’s mental health.
A survey by the Indian Psychiatry Society of 1,870 participants on the impact of Covid-19 lockdowns found that 40.5% of people were struggling with either anxiety or depression. A total of 74.1% had moderate levels of stress, and 71.7 percent reported poor well-being.
According to the All Indian Origin Chemists & Distributors (AIOCD)’s research wing (AIOCD-AWACS) — which represents more than 9 lakh pharmacists in India — the sale of the top five anti-depression drugs in the Indian market was INR 177 Crore in April 2020, which went up to INR 218 Crore in April 2021 — an increase of about 23%.
The statistics mentioned above clearly highlight the sheer need and consequent demand for mental health services. No doubt, mental health experts and psychiatrists say that more people have been consulting them now in comparison to the pre-pandemic days.
Prior to Pandemic
India was struggling with a mental health crisis even prior to the pandemic.
In 2017, over 197 million people in India had a diagnosed mental disorder out of a population of 1.3 billion. This included 45.7 million people with depressive disorders and 44.9 million with anxiety disorders, according to a study published in medical journal, the Lancet.
Taboo, Technology and the Future of India’s Mental Health
There is still a social taboo around mental health and wellness in India but it may also be disappearing with a large number of people now seeking help and employers providing mental health and wellness support to their employees. A large number of people can be seen opening up about their struggle with psychological issues.
Mental Health websites and apps are also gaining traction in India. The COVID-19 pandemic is accelerating the development of the same. That is good news for psychology because these types of apps can lead users to therapy and enhance treatment while assuring anonymity. However, there’s more work for elevating awareness among masses that needs to be taken up.
Here at Psychology India Magazine, we do our part and work with those connected to Psychology – whether psychologists, scientists, clinicians, educators or students. We also aim to utilize our expertise by working directly with the organizations that facilitate prevention and treatment of mental health disorders both through research and dialogue.
To Mental Health.
Have a blessed day!
Psychology India Magazine
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