Covid and mental health: ways out of the crisis

Scientific studies show that the year-long pandemic has had a significant impact on mental health. Many people are suffering as a result of far-reaching restrictions, the burden of individual responsibility and infection rates that are rising despite all the efforts. Many people with a history of depression have been particularly hard hit. How should society react?

Open/close all quotes
hvg (HU) /

One stress factor after another

The constant ups and downs in the pandemic are only exacerbating the problem, psychologist Annamária V. Komlósi explains in hvg:

“During the second wave, the promise of vaccines instilled a feeling of hope. Now, however, delivery problems and uncertainty regarding the vaccines are a new stress factor. Mental disorders are becoming more common and mental fatigue is growing. ... More and more often this can lead people to resort to solutions that are anything but that: infractions, fraud, alcohol and drug consumption, destructive and self-destructive behaviour (aggression and suicide) are the result.”

Corriere della Sera (IT) /

Politicisation of loneliness will be the big issue

The topic of loneliness must not be ignored, warns author Marco Demarco in Corriere della Sera:

“We're alone in this pandemic and infodemic, overwhelmed both by the virus and by the news. Alone in paralysed cities that are no longer able to protect us. ... We're alone vis-à-vis the power of algorithms, the debunking of ideologies and the derailment of political parties. It will be difficult not to include loneliness on the long list of fears that fuel the engines of populism. The politicisation of loneliness will be the big issue, nothing else.”

Eesti Päevaleht (EE) /

Tax reductions for health promotion

Eesti Päevaleht sees a way to address the growing problem with mental illness:

“The mental health problem will not disappear when the pandemic ends, but will remain with us for a long time to come. We should use the Covid crisis as an opportunity to turn things around. The Estonian Employers' Confederation came up with an idea: expenses directly or indirectly related to workers' health should be subject to tax reductions or even be completely exempt from taxes. This could be implemented quickly if the political will to do so exists. And it is not an elitist measure: in 2019, 4,100 Estonian companies used tax reductions to promote sport activities for 69,000 employees.”

Visão (PT) /

Face the challenges and build a better world

Visão says that despite all the bad news the worst is over now:

“After more than 800,000 diagnosed cases and more than 16,000 deaths, the economy is in a state of collapse - along with mental health. Precariousness has infected the lives of millions of Portuguese and billions of people worldwide. Young people are worried, parents are exhausted and grandparents are sad. Yet we see light at the end of the tunnel. ... We - the young, the parents and the grandparents - are ready to get back on track and build, step by step, a more just, humane and equitable world. ... There are still great challenges ahead, but in March 2021 we must remember that a year ago we were a lot further away from our goal.”