Pandemic Causing More Harm Than Can be Seen 

Annalise Brooke, Photographer 

It’s safe to say that this year has brought things that nobody expected. 20/20 vision couldn’t even see a year full of fires, murder hornets, and most important a worldwide pandemic. This pandemic has affected people everywhere in so many ways. Some have gotten sick and even died from the virus while others have had a very difficult time staying inside and not having as much human interaction as they should. There has been job loss as the economy has crashed and political stress from this year being the election. Sports have been cancelled which has been a huge change for some as well. Many factors are contributing to peoples’ stress and anxiety of what to do next. Mental health is extremely important, and it has been difficult to keep it in mind while trying to keep everyone safe from the virus. 

Humans are a sociable species and can’t survive alone. Everyone needs someone that they can talk to; that will understand them and their needs. People need help. During this pandemic each area of the world has been following their own rules and some countries have had months of quarantine. Isabelle Jensen, student at Rocky Mtn. High, stated,” Having company around you can help you stay positive… and having peers the same age, knowing they are going through the same things as you is comforting.” People rely on others, especially during hard times. When they don’t have someone to relate to or get advice from they may not know how to deal with it which can result to anxiety and depression. Anxiety has built up in people especially kids during this time. Doctors have seen an increase of diagnoses in anxiety, depression, and distress during the last few months of this pandemic.  

Being couped inside a house and not able to socialize with friends has been very difficult for a lot of people. It has been harder for kids with abusive parents, money troubles or that just feel ignored. “The numbers of Americans suffering from mental health disorders like anxiety and depression have more than tripled during the COVID-19 pandemic”, according to a new survey from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Another stressor during Covid-19 has been the loss of jobs from the crashing economy. Millions around the world lost their jobs in the past few months leaving them and their families without money to buy the necessities.  According to The Washington Post “more than 33 million were suddenly without a job during the pandemic”. Job loss as a result of this pandemic aids in the sudden increase of mental health issues. Losing a job adds a ton of stress on a family and can result in anxiety and depression.  

There are numerous perspectives about the issue of balancing mental health, opening schools to have better education, and keeping people safe from Covid-19. Deciding which is more important is an impossible task put on school districts, teachers, parents and students. When asked what schools should do to protect kids from the virus and give them a good education, Alessandra Brooke, a student at Rocky Mtn. High School, explained, “Schools doing in person education should enforce face masks and social distancing to keep everyone as safe as they can.” In person school is easier for kids to learn so doing as much as they can to continue that but also keep safety precautions is important. Mr. Shayne Steiner, a teacher at Rocky Mtn. High School, said, “I believe that if we can find a way to open up what we can to help better the mental health of the people, in a safe and impactful way, I believe we should do everything in our power to do that.” He went on to explain how important mental health is especially while people are young. The quality of education is better in person and the social aspect helps kids cope with stress. He also went on to say, “I have learned throughout being social that so many other people have similar experiences and will often have great advice. Sometimes all you need is to be able to vent and have someone listen to you. Humans were not designed/created to be isolated. We thrive on community.” 

All in all mental health is something to be aware of especially during times like these. Unfortunately there isn’t a right way to balance everyone’s mental health and protect people from the virus but reaching out to friends however possible can make a huge difference. Everyone has suffered from the pandemic in a different way and time with loved ones should never be taken for granted. This experience is something that will be taught to future generations for them to learn from so doing the best one can is important. Choosing to be respectful, cautious, and caring to others will be worth it in the end and is what will make the difference.