How students' mental health deteriorated during the pandemic? It is a fundamental question to address as it will assist the educational institutions in bringing about practical solutions for students' mental health in Covid-19.
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a severe impact all over the world. It has thrown the world off-balance. Fear, worry, stress, etc., are normal reactions to anything that threatens us. So it is understandable that people fear the consequences of the pandemic.
Apart from the fear of other consequences, there is an additional worry of the contracting virus during this COVID-19 pandemic, along with other mental issues. Thus, mental health naturally goes down. This pandemic has brought out significant changes in our daily lives. There are so many restrictions that stop us from carrying out our day-to-day activities to slow the spreading of this virus. Being faced with all these new realities of being temporarily unemployed, working from home, studying and being educated from home, and the lack of physical support from other human beings such as our friends, colleagues, classmates, family, etc. has affected student mental health during Covid-19. It is necessary to care for our mental health, especially during this time, as we face new challenges every day.
This Lockdown has taken a significant toll on all the students too. It has disrupted their lives significantly and has caused the students to lose all the order in their lives. It can be rather stressful. The students who once had order and meaning in life try to make the best of situations, even in chaos. The stress of trying to receive proper education from home is a challenging task. Trying to achieve all their goals and meet the required expectations to keep going is challenging and stressful. Mental health amongst all this is lost. Students are trying to cope with all these changes, which automatically results in their mental health deterioration. While the professors are adjusting to the newer teaching methods, it is difficult for them to know how many students experience mental health issues.
Understanding the need and importance of the Lockdown
This Lockdown is highly necessary to prevent the spreading of the COVID-19 virus. It means not stepping out of our houses unless necessary. It involves the complete shutdown of schools, colleges, and other institutions, along with all offices and factories for the time being. These places are where people gather in masses, increasing the virus's chances of spreading, making it more of a fear than it already is. This entire Lockdown has helped in controlling the virus spreading to a great extent.
Effect of the Lockdown on the students
The closure of all educational institutions has led to an unprecedented impact on education. During this period, students gain knowledge from online learning platforms. Researchers observed a need to adopt creative and innovative teaching methods for continuing education and overcome mental health problems during the Lockdown. This online mode of teaching is often is discriminatory against poor and marginalized students. It results in stress and poor mental health. Most students are diagnosed with depression, anxiety, stress, and other mental issues in this period. Indeed the student's mental health during Lockdown is at stake.
Students of many countries face poor internet connectivity, followed by the absence of a favorable environment to study at home. Students who live in rural areas face it. Researchers suggest that poverty creates another problem of the digital learning process during this crisis, adding to mental stresses.
How to handle the Lockdown and social isolation for better mental health?
It is very normal for students to get emotional during this period. It is hard to control these emotions while undergoing such significant changes. Here are a few tips for handling all these changes to improve mental health:
- If one feels angry or irritated, try taking their focus off from the problem to calm down. Counting backward from 10 to 0 helps. Yoga, meditation, and breathing exercises also assist in calming down.
- While feeling anxious or nervous, take ten deep breaths to help yourself relax. A break from your work will help you relax.
- While feeling afraid or scared, write down your thoughts in a book or a diary. Letting it all out would help you. A good cry could also help.
- Feelings of sadness and loneliness are also quite common. Social distancing does that to a person. Calling and being in contact with your friends and relatives could cheer you up. Indulging in your hobbies like drawing, cooking, painting, singing, etc., also helps you feel better.
- In case all these emotions are consistent for long periods, seek professional help. Consulting a therapist and speaking to medical professionals would help you improve your mental health significantly.
The COVID-19 pandemic disrupted everyone's lives significantly. Just like every other major outbreak in the past, we shall get through this one too. The mental stresses, especially amongst students, can easily be handled by the above few tips. This pandemic has been an eye-opener, especially for all the students across the world. Hence, this is how students’ mental health deteriorated during the pandemic and the numerous solutions to improve it.