Post-pandemic mental health issues still affecting students


Designed by Amanda Clubb

Students are still affected by mental health issues caused by pandemic lock downs.

Amanda Clubb, Writer

The COVID-19 pandemic caused a lot of societal change within the past few years. Students especially have been affected by lock downs and lifestyle changes. Three years later, teens are looking back on the pandemic and reflecting on its effects. 

Students experienced an abrupt change in routine and lifestyle when school moved online. Online school caused isolation for students, and many experienced mental health issues as a result. A Frontiers study showed that 56% of students who transitioned to online learning showed symptoms of depression. OHS counselor Ms. Tami Langlois said, “People crave human connection, but during the pandemic they just didn’t know how to go about it.”

During the extended period of aloneness caused by school shutdowns, many students experienced the effects of social isolation. Senior Alexis Haggerty said, “I didn’t think there would be much harm in it, and then as the weeks kept going I noticed I became more depressed and anxious, and I even became diagnosed with depression and anxiety. I had never been a depressed or anxious person prior to that.”

These pandemic-related mental health problems are causing lasting issues for teens. Three years later, the effects of pandemic shutdowns are still felt. Ms. Langlois said, “I think the big lesson through COVID was that we do need human connection… and now we almost don’t know how to get it back.”

It is crazy and sad how these effects from the pandemic have lasted three years, and I’m still managing them to this day.

— Alexis Haggerty

Depression and anxiety are not problems that can instantly go away. They take time, effort and treatment to heal from. Haggerty said, “I’ve gotten a lot better, but it is crazy and sad how these effects from the pandemic have lasted three years, and I’m still managing them to this day.”

Looking back, many are frustrated with how COVID shutdowns still affect them today. Haggerty said, “I think it did much more harm than good. From a personal perspective, for the rest of my life, I will be affected by this in a negative way. Humans are social creatures, and they need interaction. By shutting down the world, you’re bound to have problems arise, especially in young people who are still developing.”

The COVID-19 pandemic brought a lot of change to society in a short period of time. With that change came unprecedented isolation. Three years later, the effects of that isolation are still present in society. For many, returning to normalcy post-pandemic is an enduring struggle.