One in five (21%) adults experienced some form of depression in early 2021, more than double that observed before the Covid-19 pandemic (10%), a report by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has revealed.
According to the ONS report on Coronavirus and depression in adults, younger adults and women were more likely to experience some form of depression, with more than four in 10 (43%) women aged 16 to 29 years experiencing depressive symptoms, compared with 26% of men of the same age.
Disabled (39%) and clinically extremely vulnerable (CEV) adults (31%) were more likely to experience some form of depression than non-disabled (13%) and non-CEV adults (20%).
A higher proportion of adults renting their home experienced some form of depression (31%) when compared with adults who own their home outright (13%).
Almost three in 10 (28%) adults living in the most deprived areas of England experienced depressive symptoms; this compares with just under two in 10 (17%) adults in the least deprived areas of England.
Darren Woodwood, a psychotherapist and principal at livelife, a new digital counselling service, which was set up by national health and care organisation Turning Point, in response to the pandemic, said: ‘The pandemic has taken a toll on the nation’s mental health.
‘As shown by the data published by the ONS, younger people and in particular young women, have borne the brunt of this.
‘Lack of social interaction, more limited opportunities to get out and about, loss of livelihood and fear for our loved ones have all had an impact.
‘Increasing numbers of people seeking support and the pressure this is placing on NHS talking therapies services, was a key reason that Turning Point set up livelive. We wanted to create an affordable, flexible service that can provide counselling at the point when people reach out for help.
‘With one in five adults and nearly half of women aged 19-30 having experienced depression during the pandemic, it is clear that easy to access counselling is needed more than ever.’
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