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Student mental health in decline post-pandemic

Student+mental+health+in+decline+post-pandemic

Student’s mental health affects the performance of millions throughout the United States, from Alaska to Washington D.C.

Unfortunately, not all students’ mental health is the best; with the COVID-19 pandemic, it has gotten worse for much of the student population. After the pandemic ended, students’ mental health has taken a downward spiral.

According to the CDC (2022), “more than a third (37%) of high school students reported they experienced poor mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic, and 44% reported they persistently felt sad or hopeless during the past year.” Many students have bad mental health due to the isolation of the pandemic. However, when returning to school, not everyone’s mental health has improved, and in fact, some students have never felt more alone. Thus, a large amount of the population has developed depression or anxiety.

Depression is a struggle many people deal with in their daily life. However, the CDC, in the same article, stated, “A study published in PLOS ONE surveyed university students in the UK and found that 71% of them reported moderate to severe psychological distress during the pandemic, and 35% reported suicidal thoughts.”

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Due to isolation for months and then being thrown back into everyday life, expectations of everything to return to normal, but no one can expect everyone to be the same. During the pandemic, isolation led to depressive and suicidal thoughts. Sadly, much of that has carried past the end of the pandemic and into our new lives.

According to the Pew Research Center,, “Overall, 37% of students at public and private high schools reported that their mental health was not good most or all of the time during the pandemic,” and “In the survey, ‘poor mental health’ includes stress, anxiety, and depression–about three in ten high school students (31%). In addition, 44% said that, in the previous 12 months, they felt sad or hopeless almost every day for two weeks in a row, such that they stopped doing some usual activities.” The long periods of being by themselves mixed with stress, being unable to do the things you loved doing and other factors have led to the reclusiveness of many and the feeling of being alone to grow exponentially.

The article further illuminates the poor condition of LGBTQ+ students, stating that“High school (LBTQ+) students … reported higher rates of mental health stresses than their heterosexual peers.” LGBTQ+ students may not always have the best mental health, based on personal experience. The stress of keeping the secret in and not being able to be who you are, mixed with fear of bullying and ridicule, has led to a terrible mindset for many of the LGBTQ+ youth.

Students’ mental health is often sacrificed for good grades, but, just like grades, mental health is essential in everyday life.

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