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Long-term effects of covid, the pandemic & lockdown

GemmaGemma Community Manager Posts: 570 Incredible Poster
edited March 6 in Health & Wellbeing
It's been 4 years since the UK first went into lockdown during the covid-19 pandemic - can't believe it's been 4 years!

It was a hugely difficult time for many of us. We saw people struggling with their mental health and loneliness due to self-isolation and social distancing, anxiety about outbreaks and illness, stress caused by adjusting to new routines, financial and employment insecurity, relationship strains. It was a lot!

The Mix has partnered with Verian to support young people across the UK who are sharing their experiences of the pandemic as part of the covid enquiry and how it might have affected them. We've created this thread for all of our community and for those who've taken part in this project to share experiences of covid :)

If you're a current member of our community, you may see some new members here!

If you've joined us from the interview with Verian - welcome! It's so lovely to have you part of our community (for more info on how to use the discussion boards, head to our help desk).

We'd love to help you all connect with each other and wondered if anyone would feel comfy sharing if they are still feeling some long-term impacts of the covid pandemic/lockdowns?

Do you feel as though you're still feeling the effects of that time? (Whether that's the impact it's had on your physical/mental health, finances, social life, education, or relationships.)

We are looking to create some support content about the long-term impacts of covid and so it would be really interesting to hear your experiences and get an idea of the kinds of support that is needed. 💛


  • Amy22Amy22 Posts: 3,944 Community Veteran
    I think for me covid had its ups and down's (also it brought me here actually in the year 2022 when covid was kind of still about but no as bad). For me during 2020, I was supposed to be finishing my year 13 in secondary school but ended not going back because of the severity and impact covid had on the UK. I found sometimes it quite oddly peaceful then especially in Summer as there was not many people about in shops, so it would be quieter and I woulden't be stressed out too much. Whereas now crowds kind of scare me. I also read a lot more during lockdown but now I have entered the world of work after doing 3 years (I think its 3 years) in college, I never have to time to really properly read or anything.

    However, during the year 2021, my anxiety worsened especially in October 2020, I was 18 years now (now 22 this year) and I was on an art course but due to limited classes and help and stuff, I would copy drawings to learn. But I felt so bad. Also I had to search up the name of location we all had to draw in animation class using our imagination and I kind of cheated. I never got the chance to tell my teacher eventhough I needed to google the prompt but had to draw from my brain. I also had to have help from my mum in re-doing maths and we watched a youtube video to get the answers for a paper. I came clean to my maths tutor about me cheating and they told me that the papaer wasn't being marked properly anyway and I explained in a test I did at home during covid for maths, my mum had to sit down with me and help me. My tutor explained that if she knew I was so anxious in that test and stuff she would have done the same and that my mum was doing the right thing. But I felt like I cheated and this affected my mental health so so much. I have and still have so much hidden guilt from 2021, especially when I took part in inktober and the creator/artist was accused of plagarism and it caused this spiral inside of me to feel bad for everything I done. I started doing counselling online and using silvercloud but the therapy services were very limited and there wasn't enough time for me to properly get any benefit from them. No one would properly read my diary after the six months on silvercloud and it would be quite lonely on there.

    2022, I started my creative media course in the hopes of starting afresh and new but my dad fell severly ill and had a serious infection in his hip which meant he was in hospital for nearly most the year until June/July when he came out. I had a habit of double checking my work and artwork a lot and referencing it to the point I missed out on things even basic things like eating and sleeping. My mum decided to take me back to the GP and I was referred for another mental health assessment where the assessor told me about TheMix and ever since I have been on here (since August 2022 I believe). I think if I wasn't sign posted to TheMix I think I would have got worse and woulden't be where I am today. I was also put onto medication, fluoxecetine (1 a day) which kinds of help. I still take fluoxetine now and it regulates my anxiety and depression/OCD symptoms a lot.

    I think covid had a big impact on me and my family, moreover my dad who was in hospital in 2022 when covid was still hanging around and it kind of me made feel stressed.

    Thanks for sharing this on here though @Gemma as I do feel like COVID-19 and lockdown had a massive impact on so many lives and young people in particular.

    (A little update from me: I copied and pasted this over from a different thread and pm from TheMix who reccomended I post this here. :) )
    Just a person who likes pop culture and films
  • MaisyMaisy Moderator Posts: 627 Incredible Poster
    I feel like I've been really lucky in that the pandemic and lockdowns hasn't affected me, personally, too much, that said I've definitely noticed a difference in life pre and post pandemic.

    I was finishing up university when we went into our first lockdown, so I only had 2-3 weeks of online learning. I didn't mind either way whether I was in person or online, but equally, it did feel weird that I had technically finished university without much closure. Graduation was delayed but I couldn't go even when graduation's started back up because the university chose a bigger venue for graduation (possibly because of how they had a few years worth of graduations to hold) that wasn't accessible for me.

    I also really wanted to get volunteering but naturally with the lockdowns and social distancing this wasn't possible, so I feel I've wasted more time than what I wanted really. On top of that, I feel like life has never really gone back to normal. Places that I considered volunteering at have now closed or have a backlog of workload, or are doing things off-site so aren't taking on new volunteers etc. This probably crosses over onto the cost of living crisis (in my mind, the crisis is partly a result of the pandemic) too. My opticians closed so now I have to find a new one and even though I'm registered with a dentist, there are waiting lists for appointments of up to several months. I notice a lot of jobs too mention flexible work environments or hybrid working (mixture of office work and working from home) but I'm not convinced that's a good thing. I've seen more errors in paperwork in the last few years that family members have to correct that I can't help but feel might be the result of people working from home. And that just causes more stress. My friendships have also suffered a bit as there were years I haven't been able to see friends (when I normally would have) and now with the cost of living crisis (train fare isn't cheap!) and other things, it's still a struggle now at times.

    Health wise, I'm okay. I didn't like having the vaccinations but pushed myself. I struggled more with health anxiety and over washing hands exacerbating my eczema. I still struggle with this at times, but it's getting better. But apart from that, I consider myself lucky.

    Though, I did really like how quiet the roads were when we were in lockdown. It was more peaceful and safer to be a pedestrian. I liked the community spirit of clapping for the NHS too. And I guess when we came out of lockdown, I really appreciated having the freedom to go out and do things again.
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