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Neuropsychiatric Burden of COVID-19 on General Population

The novel coronavirus disease after being characterized as a pandemic in March 2020 due to its rapid human to human transmission has led to a serious panic state in individuals’ world over. And to tackle the situation, governments of different countries, international organizations, and NGOs have sprung into action. Novel coronavirus infections have emerged periodically in different countries around the world.

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV) occurred in 2002, infecting 8,422 people and causing 916 deaths during the epidemic. Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) was first identified in 2012. At the end of 2019, novel coronavirus pneumonia (NCP) emerged in Wuhan and spread rapidly. The pathogen was confirmed new coronavirus, which was officially named COVID-19 by the world health organization (WHO). SARS-CoV, MERS-CoV, and COVID-19 belong to the same genera of CoV and all are beta-CoV. COVID-19 shares a 79.5% sequence identity with SARS-CoV.

As known “prevention is better than cure”, instructions are being given and various national and international action plans are becoming operational. An important yet neglected part of the scenario is the psychological implications of the disease. Preventive measures such as

  • self-quarantine
  • social distancing
  • restricted travel
  • closing down of all public
  • educational institutions

are giving rise to

  • stress
  • anxiety
  • boredom
  • mood swings
  • depression
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As flu-like symptoms are though diagnostic of coronavirus disease, this relation has created fear and panic in people who have these symptoms, though in half cases is due to a common cold, besides those around them.

Neuropsychiatric Burden of Covid-19

To top it all, lockdowns and news about the mounting number of cases, with increasing mortality rate and lack of equipment and health facilities has left people in terror and alarm. And these implications are not only found in the patients, their families, those at risk, and the general population but also medics and healthcare providers who are becoming selfish as well as leaders of the time. According to a research done in China, it has been estimated that post-traumatic scores were higher in children who were in quarantine than those who were not. Because of the present state of affairs, WHO has given out guidelines addressing the crisis, which include;

  • showing care
  • support and passion for others
  • avoiding any news or piece of information that gives you anxiety
  • utilizing time proficiently
  • focusing more on the bright side of the picture.

Pre and post-COVID-19 situation globally affects everything. Jobs, schools, universities, businesses, etc will be going to be handle in other dimensions as the people of all ages are suppressed by this pandemic condition. For a strong and ethical society, we all should play our role to support the good positive vibe all around. THIS WORLD DESERVES ANOTHER BEGINNING!

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Written by Sawaira Ahmad

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