The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has impacted global health physically, financially, and mentally. However, its impact on mental health is severe in adolescents, especially girls aging between 13 to 18 years.
The recent study published in The Lancet Psychiatry found increased cases of mental health issues in adolescents of age 13 to 18 years compared to same-age peers before the pandemic. The study was performed on 59000 adolescents in Iceland by a team of behavioral and social scientists from Iceland and North America.
On the other hand, the study also revealed a decrease in smoking and substance use by adolescents during the pandemic. Clinical psychologist Thorhildur Halldorsdottir, who works as an Assistant Professor of Psychology at Reykjavik University in Iceland stated how socially isolating from friends and peers can affect mental health in adolescents. “The effects of school closure not only have set back their learning but also has had a negative impact on their mental health as children couldn’t meet with their friends and peers. What we can’t say is how deeper this impact is,” added the professor.