WATCH – From the Heart –  

Dec. 1, 2020 – The year 2020 has exacted a psychological toll on Americans. Levels of anxiety and depression have skyrocketed alongside increases in drug overdoses and alcohol consumption. Meanwhile, a recent report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention contained an alarming statistic: When young adults were asked if they had seriously considered suicide in the past 30 days, about 25 percent said they had.

“The collective way a lot of people in the United States might be feeling right now is probably indicative of mental fatigue,” said Stephen O’Connor, a clinical psychologist and chief of the Suicide Prevention Research Program at the National Institute of Mental Health. “The impact of the pandemic and the necessary response to limit its impact have really changed people’s lifestyles in dramatic ways that reduce the quality of life for many people.” Some people might be finding it harder to access the usual social supports, O’Connor said, such as being around loved ones. But he and other experts emphasized that there are many ways to be there, even from a distance, for those who are struggling.

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