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Covid patients at risk of developing mental illness

woman testing herself for covid
woman testing herself for covid Image credit: scientificamerican.com

A US study suggests people who have or developed Covid-19 have an increased likelihood of going on to develop a mental health condition.

Research from the US Department of Veterans Affairs indicates the illness can lead to anxiety and depression. The study involved a majority of males with the average age of 63.

Data was compared between 153,848 people who contracted Covid against 560,000 who did not have any sign of the condition and a large control group dating back to before the pandemic hit.

Results implied those who suffered from coronavirus were in a higher risk category of developing a mental illness such as anxiety, substance abuse, depression and sleep deprivation.

A total of 60% of people who had Covid were more likely to need a prescription for their mental health within 12 months or suffer from a mental health condition.

Those who had a history with Covid carried a 39% higher risk for developing depression, 55% more likely to use antidepressants and an increased 35% chance of being diagnosed with anxiety.

There was also a 2.4% increase of Covid patients having problems with their sleep and a 0.4% rise with substance abuse.

A report in The Lancet in November said that 18 percent of Covid patients suffered from a mental health issue within three months of a positive test.