A third of Spaniards affirm that the year 2020 had a direct impact on their emotional well-being
The pandemic has highlighted the importance of mental health for the population. In fact, a few months ago the WHO warned of the
increase in mental health problems after the pandemic and he warned that the world’s population should prepare for several years of collective trauma. Mental health has gained prominence in the last year and is that according to the study ‘Sanitas emotional well-being’, a third of Spaniards affirm that the situation caused by the pandemic has directly affected their emotional health.
All of this is reflected in the
exponential increase in psychology consultations. In Sanitas, video consultations with these professionals have multiplied by 22 between January and August 2021 compared to the same period in 2019, they have gone from 2,123 to 47,129 digital consultations. The same occurs in face-to-face consultations where there has been a 30% increase between 2020 and 2021.
“Since the pandemic broke out, we have detected a
greater concern for mental health in the population. The cases of anxiety, depression or emotional fatigue have increased in the last year, but, in addition, we detect that people go to consultation earlier, and that there is a greater awareness of emotional well-being and that is important. In fact, we must remember that mental health is a risk factor for other diseases and must be addressed. Not taking care of mental health is related to the appearance of other organic diseases, such as cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, dermatological diseases, etc. » explains María García Salinas, a psychologist at Sanitas.
Importance of emotional well-being for the population
«The situation experienced has caused society to put on the table the
importance of emotional well-being and mental health care. In fact, there are already seven out of ten Spaniards who consider it equally important to take care of mental health in the same way as other health. It is noteworthy that two out of ten believe that emotional well-being is more important, since it influences general health and requires professional care when necessary, ”explains Soraya Bajat, head of the Mental Health service at Hospital Sanitas La Moraleja y Psicología del Sanitas La Zarzuela Hospital.
The signs of anxiety, depression and fatigue have increased in the last year and a half derived from the situation experienced and the confinement. In fact,
52% consider that they are sadder or more apathetic for having decreased social relations and 37% of Spaniards suffered a feeling of anguish and uncertainty, especially women and young people between the ages of 25 and 35.
«In mental health, as with physical health and organic diseases, prevention is essential, as well as early detection, because the sooner we detect symptoms, the greater the probability of success of the intervention, and the less the impact. .
We must influence going to a mental health professional as soon as we detect situations that we do not know how to handle, to normalize not only the fact of going to the psychologist or psychiatrist, but the fact of experiencing mental problems or simply emotional difficulties that are difficult for us to handle. We need to facilitate, normalize and destigmatize people’s mental health, ”explains García Salinas.
“We have all been afraid during the pandemic: of the disease, of the death of ourselves or of people we love, of losing our job, of putting our lives on hold. What’s more,
the isolation of the confinements has highlighted the loneliness of many people. All these fears have resulted in anxiety, irritable states and, above all, sadness. We feel that, in part, we have lost control of our lives and this has led many people to emotional distress that is very difficult to manage. The key is to help the people who turn to us so that they can have tools to solve the remains of each day, without anticipating future problems, “concludes Bajat.