HOW LOCKDOWN IS AFFECTING STUDENTS’ MENTAL HEALTH AND WELLBEING.

We are all aware that in the past year our lives have changed completely.

Bars have been closed, events have been cancelled and we’ve been unable to see our loved ones and friends. 

With the new lockdown in place, a lot of us are taking it much harder than we did before.

73% of students have said that their mental health has declined during lockdown.

It’s completely understandable for those living away from home at university or who are stuck at home 24/7 having to sit in front of a screen on a zoom call and never fully experience the firsts of a university lifestyle.

Student halls during lockdown

A University student shared their experience with Uni work and lockdown, stating that:

“I’m a 45 – year – old mature student and should be writing my dissertation as it’s my final year. Instead, I am frozen with fear, my brain is not working and I’m failing miserably.”

Many students are suffering the consequences just like they did at the start of the year when the first lockdown was put into place.

But we all expected 2021 to be a year of new beginnings and one where we could put the past behind us.

The UK went into lockdown in March of 2020 when Coronavirus cases were rising at a scary speed, putting us all into a panic.

Suddenly schools were closed, shops, bars and panic buyers were on the loose swiping up an unnecessary amount of toilet paper and hand sanitizer.

Then the online lessons started; students were in class one minute and then on a zoom call with their classmates and lecturers the next minute.

At first, I think we all took this to our advantage, thinking the time spent at home would do a world of good by picking up new hobbies, trying new things and being better at them.

However, this did not last long.

Student halls

Larrissa Kennedy, National Union for Students (NUS) National President has spoken up about lockdown and the effect it has had on student’s mental health. She stated that:

“Students deserve better than their treatment this term. It is time for governments to fund their university, college and NHS mental health services to ensure all students can get the support they require.

“It should be no surprise that the majority of students have experienced deteriorating mental health as a result of the pandemic”

It hasn’t been easy for anyone, and I don’t think any of us are holding our breaths for anything to get better anytime soon.

The future?

As the vaccine for COVID-19 has started to be dished out to the public gradually, we can only hope and pray that students and those wanting to one day go to university or go back to university will be able to experience this without the fear of another lockdown looming over their shoulders.

As we reach almost a year of living with Covid, it is important that we remember to take care of ourselves and each other. 

Don’t suffer in silence and remember to keep in mind others may be suffering too. Be kind to yourself, be kind to others.

SUICIDE HOTLINES –

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/suicide/

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