Quarantine’s effect on mental health in teens

By: Mary Koch

Quarantine had overwhelming effects on everyone, especially teenagers. Spending months at home and not being able to see friends in person isn’t healthy, and teens’ mental health is an example.

Not being able to go to school in person made things more difficult, and it was harder to keep up with classes and assignments. Stress of staying on top of working and trying to understand lessons without having as easily accessible help wasn’t easy.

Things like school dances, performances, and sports were cancelled or postponed, so students ended up missing out on things they won’t have a chance to do again. Graduations and school events were socially distanced or virtual, and the overall experience wasn’t the same.

A poll taken in New York indicated that 1 in 3 girls and 1 in 5 boys, from the ages of 13 to 18, have had more severe anxiety since quarantine began.

Without the pandemic, 14.3% of teens will experience depression or bipolar disorder. Adding on the effects of quarantine over 22% of teens are meeting criteria for having one or both of those mental illnesses.

When people are suffering from depression, it’s recommended that people don’t isolate themselves, but with the lockdown, there was no other option. Kids have to stay home, they couldn’t see their friends or non-immediate family, and they had fewer activities.

Having a good steady sleep schedule can make positive changes in people’s lives. With lockdown school was done online, so students didn’t need to wake up at the same time everyday. Instead of going to bed and getting a good night’s sleep, they stayed up doing homework, watching TV, and going on their phones.

Lockdown also strained relationships with friends, and many teens came out with fewer than they had when the lockdown started. With fewer friends and less of a support system, people’s mental health will decline.

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