On the 25th of March 2020, a 36 year-old Bangladeshi named Zahidul Islam in the village of Ramchandrapur committed suicide after his return from Dhaka. The inhabitants of his village had suspected him of having been infected by COVID-19, as he was showing symptoms of fever, cold, and weight loss. He was put into self-isolation by the village people and then later committed suicide. He hanged himself on a tree near his house in the village. Sadly, his autopsy revealed that the victim is negative from the COVID-19 (Somoy News, 2020).
In Southern Asian country like Bangladesh, people living in the village are likely to be less educated. Also, they are at risk of having excessive fear and misunderstandings around the uncertainties of the COVID-19. Limited knowledge about the COVID-19 has contributed to higher rates of xenophobia among villagers, thus resulting in a significant correlation to suicide rates.
In Bangladesh, 16.1% of adults and 18.4% of children are affected by psychiatric illness, but the care disparity and inequality are also high. And mental health services in large cities tend to be centralised and concentration is mainly on those who can afford the care services.
In the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important to ensure that emotional and physical well-being are part of our health care solution and that individuals with significant mental well-being issues such as stress or anxieties should be dealt correctly.
Globally, many are fighting to cope with the psychological impact of living in isolation. Mental health impact assessments of previous outbreaks of illnesses such as the SARS epidemic in the early 2000s have demonstrated a clear rise in the rate of suicide and the number of emotionally distressed medical workers. But the impact of the COVID-19 epidemic is far greater than what has seen before, with billions of people forced into isolation within their own homes without the knowledge of when all of this will end.
As a result, psychological mediators such as sadness, concern, fear, anger, distress, frustration, guilt, impotence, loneliness anxiety, and nervousness have risen among individuals. Moreover, people have not only worry about getting infected by the virus but are also concern about money as the lockdown measure impacted economic repercussions.
Problems of Young Students
In Bangladesh, for Covid-19, students are feeling stress as they stay at home. Students cannot study at home all the time and need to get involved in other extra-curricular activities. Because of this stay at home situation, depression makes its way in. Many students lost their part-time jobs, and some are getting infected by the coronavirus, which eventually lead them into mental despair.
The fresh graduates are now worried about how they will stand out in the job market in a post-pandemic world as they have to compete with people who have lost their jobs due to the crisis.
A recent study in Bangladesh on the COVID-19-related economic factors shows an extreme economic impact that resulted in income dropping from 82% to $0.32 (US) per capita by April 2020. For instance, an individual living in the slum have a drop in income from $1.30 (US) in February to a $0.39 (US) which indicate a 79% reduction among rural poor people.
Covid-19 has resulted in unemployment for thousands of low-skilled immigrants as lockdowns remain in place to curb the infectious virus rates in many countries. This economic hardship has become inevitable, and there are no signs of the economy reviving rapidly in the near future. This has the potential to facilitate further unbearable mental health issues among immigrants. On top of this, there are knock-on effects on family members who are mostly or solely dependent on the immigrants' income.
In the COVID-19 pandemic, it is crucial to ensure that emotional and physical well-being is part of our healthcare solution and that individuals with significant mental issues such as stress or anxieties should be dealt with correctly. The considerable burden of mental disorders worldwide has led to increasing global recognition of the importance of mental health. Having a well-thought, thorough mental health policy in place is an essential step towards improving the population’s mental health.
The COVID-19 is a global crisis, and it is essential to recognize the fact that there will be fall out of mental health issue due to the negative impact of the pandemic. Individuals, families, communities, health workers, and government, must acknowledge the need for support from those who are going through a psychological break down because of the current situation. Mental health care is vital because it will help to make the right choices in aiding to curb the spread of the virus and to prepare for the “new normal”. For any individual that needs mental health support, talk to your family, friends, or someone you can trust and seek out support services.