How is mental health being affected by the pandemic?
There was a marked increase in anxiety at the beginning of lockdown. Between 20 and 30 March 2020 almost half (49.6%) of people reported high anxiety and average anxiety scores were 5.2 out of 10, a marked increase from 3.0 in the last quarter of 2019.-ONS 2021
Anxiety & stress has remained at an elevated level compared with the end of 2019, but it has dropped since the beginning of lockdown.
Average anxiety scores were 4.0 out of 10 between 30 April and 10 May 2020 and 37% were reporting high levels of anxiety.
More than two-thirds of adults in the UK (69%) report feeling somewhat or very worried about the effect COVID-19 is having on their life.
The most common issues affecting wellbeing are worry about
feeling stressed or anxious
and feeling bored
Work and Mental Health
Almost 20 million adults said that their work had been affected by the coronavirus, with over 1 in 10 (13.4%) saying that that work was their biggest concern.
People’s working lives have been affected in a range of ways by the pandemic; of those reporting high anxiety, over 1 in 5 said that their work had been affected by being asked to work from home and they were finding working from home difficult, between 10 April and 3 May 2020.
Additionally, almost 22% of respondents said work had been affected by being furloughed, in the same.
In 2020, of British adults in employment – a staggering 79% commonly experience work-related stress.
HSE defines stress as ‘the adverse reaction people have to excessive pressures or other types of demand placed on them’.
Employees feel stress when they can’t cope with pressures and other issues. Employers should match demands to employees’ skills and knowledge. For example, employees can get stressed if they feel they don’t have the skills or time to meet tight deadlines. Providing planning, training and support can reduce pressure and bring stress levels down.
Stress affects people differently – what stresses one person may not affect another. Factors like skills and experience, age or disability may all affect whether an employee can cope
1 in 6
adults will have experienced a common mental health condition in the past week
working days are lost per year in the UK do to stress, depression, and anxiety
The estimated cost to UK employers of mental health-related absence is £7.9 billion. PHE2020
Just 1% of UK employed adults say they ‘never’ experience workplace stress, while 17% ‘rarely’ experience stress of this kind-survey