Levels of depression and anxiety rising in Americans amid COVID-19


Dan Meyers - Unsplash

Signs posted on the fence of a 7-11 in Salem, Oregon.

Aurora Xiong, Contributing Writer

As we all are aware, the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has taken over every aspects of our everyday lives. COVID-19 protocols have closed and reopened many aspects of everyday life, in many parts of the world.  

With so much uncertainty of the future to come, how is this affecting Americans? With more and more strict quarantine procedures being placed among us every day by the state, the numbers of depression and anxiety amongst Americans seem to be on the rise. Is there a correlation between the rising levels of depression and this global pandemic? 

According to the Center for Disease and Control and Prevention (CDC), a little less than half of the respondents claimed to be experiencing depression and anxiety. Although those respondents cannot be applied to the overall population in America, this does not account for all of those who are not being heard. A greater number of nonrespondents could also be experiencing depression due to COVID-19. 

The CDC continued to survey and found that, of those who have responded positively to depression and anxiety, 13%  said their symptoms have further developed over time. 

These statistics seem to be positively correlated with COVID-19. This is due to the rise in numbers compared to previous surveyed years. The majority of depression and anxiety are seen in adults and of that, most are minorities. 

U.S. News reported that “Nearly 19% of Hispanic respondents reported suicidal ideations and 15% of non-Hispanic Black respondents said the same.” 

The Mental Health America (MHA) has also conducted research that shows a drastic increase in depression, anxiety and suicidal thoughts. Through online screening, they were able to reach the largest population ever done in these researches; 5.5 million mental health screenings. These screenings range from ages 11 to  65. 

The Hospitalist states, “The most profound health problems were found among adults younger than 25 years. Roughly 90% screened positive for moderate to severe depression, and 80% screened positive for moderate to severe anxiety.”  

It is understandable in these hard times, to feel stressed and depressed. Reaching out to available resources or even online and over the phone resources can help in coping with these overwhelming feelings.  

For those of do not have access to private mental healthcare and are suffering from depression and anxiety, UNC Wilmington (UNCW) has opened their doors to the community in hopes of helping those in these unsteady times. The UNCW Department of Psychology is offering sessions for   $20  and all ages are welcomed. 

The UNCW clinic is located on 720 St. James Drive. For further information, call 910-962-7525 and email [email protected]. 

If you or someone you know is having suicidal thoughts please reach out to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 800-273-8255