One in five COVID-19 patients develop mental illness within
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Many COVID-19 survivors are likely to be at greater risk of developing mental illness, after a large study found 20% of those infected with the coronavirus are diagnosed with a psychiatric disorder within 90 days.

Anxiety, depression and insomnia were most common among recovered COVID-19 patients in the study who developed mental health problems, and the researchers also found significantly higher risks of dementia, a brain impairment condition.

People have been worried that COVID-19 survivors will be at greater risk of mental health problems, and findings show this to be likely. Doctors and scientists around the world urgently need to investigate the causes and identify new treatments for mental illness after COVID-19.

The study, published in The Lancet Psychiatry journal, analysed electronic health records of 69 million people in the United States, including more than 62,000 cases of COVID-19.

In the three months following testing positive for COVID-19, 1 in 5 survivors were recorded as having a first time diagnosis of anxiety, depression or insomnia. This was about twice as likely as for other groups of patients in the same period, the researchers said.

The study also found that people with a pre-existing mental illness were 65% more likely to be diagnosed with COVID-19 than those without. Findings add to growing evidence that COVID-19 can affect the brain and mind, increasing the risk of a range of psychiatric illnesses.

This is likely due to a combination of the psychological stressors associated with this particular pandemic and the physical effects of the illness.

COVID-19 affects the central nervous system, and so might directly increase subsequent disorders. But this research confirms that is not the whole story, and that this risk is increased by previous ill health.

Source: https://in.reuters.com/article/uk-health-coronavirus-mental-illness/one-in-five-covid-19-patients-develop-mental-illness-within-90-days-study-idINKBN27P34P
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