These two years have been challenging on multiple fronts. For many Americans, this challenge has been overwhelming, affecting their mental health.
Understanding the impact of the pandemic on mental health, and on those with serious mental illness, is critical to support research and programs that will pave the way for prevention, recovery, and cure.
According to one CDC report, which surveyed adults across the U.S. in late June of 2020, 31% of respondents reported symptoms of anxiety or depression, 13% reported having started or increased substance use, 26% reported stress-related symptoms, and 11% reported having serious thoughts of suicide in the past 30 days. These numbers are nearly double the rates we would have expected before the pandemic. As in prior studies, this survey showed that risk factors for reporting anxiety symptoms or suicidal ideation included food insufficiency, financial concerns, and loneliness.