The mental health of minors in crisis after the pandemic

S. F.




The pandemic that we are living is leaving us with important physical, economic, social and psychological consequences. While it is true that the physical consequences of this destructive virus are not so destructive in minors, the psychological consequences are. This has also been revealed by the AEP (Spanish Association of Pediatrics), who has published a recent report stating that the Psychiatric emergencies in minors since the beginning of the pandemic have been increased by 50%.

Experts insist that it is key to pay close attention to detecting cases in time to be able to apply a correct treatment and solve a problem that is not aggravated later. López Ibor Clinicthat have seen a large increase, both in consultation and in the emergency room, of minor patients since the beginning of the coronavirus crisis. Confinement, restrictions, changes and the impossibility of movement, social and labor uncertainty have been important factors in aggravating the mental situation of young people, who in crises like these become more vulnerable. At this time, we must emphasize that prevention is the key to avoiding future problems.

From the psychiatry and psychology department of the López Ibor Clinic they emphasize that young people find themselves with a mental health problem that must be treated, such as depression and anxiety, which usually appear at this stage as it is an important vital moment in the development of the person, and after the effects of the pandemic they can generate greater vulnerability, as well as Addictions (screens, alcohol, drugs …), Eating disorders …

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They place special emphasis on emotional overflow and the intensity with which experiences are perceived at this stage of life, since if they are not managed properly it can lead to maladaptive behaviors such as self-harm derived from high levels of anxiety or
destructive behaviors that can lead to suicidal ideation.

The months that we have had to live have also increased other disorders such as
Obsessive Compulsive (OCD).
As the medical team of the López Ibor Clinic explains, the current situation has been able to exacerbate symptoms in patients who already had the OCD diagnosis, or trigger it in people who had never presented these symptoms, as they are unfortunately seeing from the consultations of the experts of the López Ibor Clinic. And it seems that this unfortunate and inevitably pandemic is making many of us a bit obsessive, given the dramatic human consequences that we have experienced in our own flesh, or that we have glimpsed through the media.

How to remedy in time?

It is essential to go to a professional who detects the problem and can prescribe a specific treatment. In minors, emphasis is placed on the importance of reinforcing the communication that is maintained, both from the family and at school, and greater control over social networks and over the viral challenges that are starting and reaching greater popularity. Although, it all depends on the specific problem of the child, in the case of those related to depression, here are some tips for the family member, to indicate that something is happening and thus avoid a worsening of the problem:

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1. Show your empathy.

2. Offer your support and company.

3. Help him ask for help

4. Encourage their activation

5. Reinforce your achievements

6. Avoid blame

7. Don’t overprotect him

8. Divert your attention from suffering

9. Accept that it is a slow process

10. Anticipate risk

The professionals of the López Ibor Clinic conclude that from the point of view of cognitive development, the rational and emotional part of the adolescent brain is developing, for this reason they are more impulsive and have a lower capacity to think about the consequences of their acts.

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