With the arrival of COVID-19, we were forced to live life differently. Our homes became 24/7 offices and schools, with little room or personal space to breathe and regroup. These blurred boundaries added additional stress to an already unusual set of circumstances – and exacerbated any feelings of anxiety and fears for the future.
Dr Priscilla Reddy of the Human Sciences Research Council says the pandemic has played a significant role in the fact that people are increasingly being diagnosed with depression. “From July to December 2020, the number of South Africans screening positive for depression increased from 24% to 29%,” she says. “From November to December, two in three South Africans reported symptoms of depression every day.”