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ONS Research on Covid Depression

ONS Research

ONS research shows that levels of depression have doubled during the coronavirus pandemic.

The Office of National Statistics (ONS) has researched the impact that Covid is having on depression.

To conduct the research, they used the standard Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-8) depression screener, which is also available to members of The-Calm-Club.

The PHQ-8 was completed by people in the UK, during July 2019, March 2020 and July 2020.

All references to people "with depression" relate to people reporting that they experienced moderate to severe depressive symptoms on the PHQ assessment.

Has Covid Impacted Depression?

The Covid research found that:

The levels of people experiencing depression increased from 9.7% before Covid to 19.2% during the coronavirus pandemic.

That's an increase from one in ten adults, to one in five.

It was worse in the 16 to 39 year old age range, where numbers went up to nearly one in three (31.0%). It was one in nine (10.9%) before the pandemic. Only 2.8% of that age group reported an improvement.

The figures are also higher for females (23%) then males (15%).

Finances also plays a part. If faced with an unexpected £850 bill, 12% of those who said they could afford it experienced depression. That increases to 35% for those who said they couldn't afford it.

People classed as disabled were six times more likely to experience depression than non-disabled.

Surprisingly, those living alone before the pandemic were more almost twice as likely to experience depression (15% vs 8%) but this variance was not seen during the pandemic. However, 62% of those that said they were lonely experienced depression, verses 15% who didn't feel lonely.

80% of people experiencing depression thought Covid had affected their mental health, compared to 39% without depression. Of those, 84.9% with depressive symptoms reported feeling stressed or anxious, compared with just over half (52.3%) of those with no or mild depressive symptoms. This shows correlation of these clinical labels.

The full ONS report can be found here.

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Covid Coronavirus Depression Mental Health Research

ONS research shows that levels of depression have doubled during the coronavirus pandemic.