Pandemic increases mental health awareness

Jordan Gorham, Staff Reporter

“It was a difficult experience,” junior grade student Loren Gill said.
“Just waking up in the morning, I had a fear of thinking will the pandemic be over soon… or how long do we have to live with the pandemic. But now that we have the vaccination, will things be going back to normal sooner than expected?”

Students and faculty have struggled with many things over the past year due to Covid-19, and mental health has been something that covid has taken a toll on.

“The pandemic has increased my awareness of my own mental health and for my students.” English high school teacher Valerie Schroll said. “We have never experienced any moment in our recent history like this, so this is an entirely new challenge for us.”

The Mental Health America statistics have shown that at least 13.84% of youth groups have suffered from at least one type of MDE, major depressive episode.

“13.84% of youth (age 12-17) report suffering from at least one major depressive episode(MDE) in the past year; childhood depression is more likely to persist into adulthood if untreated.”

According to the mental health America association, 9.7% of youth cope with severe major depression that sometimes causes them to adapt to other disorders like substance use, anxiety, and disorderly behavior.

“The number of youths experiencing Severe MDE increased by 126,000 from last year’s dataset; the state prevalence of youth with Severe MDE ranges from 6.3% in Mississippi to 13.5% in Maine.”

This past year has been such a struggle for many students and teachers even outside of school life, and it’s hard trying to cope mentally and emotionally with what life has thrown at us this past year.

“Breathing is an annoying cliché at this point, but that’s because the best way to calm anxiety really is to breathe deeply. When battling my own anxiety, I turned to the concept of “5 3 7” breathing.”
The National Alliance on Mental Illness recommends taking deep breaths, mental reframing, or opposite-to-emotion thinking. These techniques will not only help with any mental health issues that a person might have but they will also help with both stress and anxiety.