Mental illness increases as coronavirus pandemic sweeps across the world

By July 6, 2020

International (MNN) – Depression and anxiety has spiked during the COVID-19 pandemic and many people are searching for ways to curb it. David Creech, Operations Manager with Trans World Radio, works to provide online resources to help people cope with the global crisis.

“There’s a higher rate of suicides, there are more depressed people, especially among the people who’ve had to go into quarantine and in the vulnerable, the elderly,” he says. “Because of that, we’ve done our best to respond to those search terms, ‘God, I need help’, ‘I’m depressed’, ‘Are you real? Are you there?’ and by matching the search results, we present content that may give them a ray of hope.”

TWR360 provides online resources aiming to inform and inspire people during this pandemic. “What I have seen is people who are grateful that they have content that can encourage them. I’ve not seen any complaints,” Creech says.

Photo courtesy of TWR360

The current pandemic has caused widespread isolation and increased unemployment which impacts mental health. Technology has allowed people to receive help through online content and telehealth services.

According to an article on Scientific American, many Americans are at risk for developing post-traumatic stress disorder as a result of the current pandemic.

“At this point, we’re tired of it. We just want it to be over. Yet we’re in a second wave now and there’s no vaccine anywhere in sight” Creech says. “There really is a great need to provide a message of hope to those who are feeling depressed, lonely, and isolated.”

To help with the potential mental health crisis, the TWR website has content under their “From Despair to Hope: Coronavirus and COVID-19” banner that has many categories one can choose from to be encouraged and get help. They also have a banner titled, “COVID-19 From Turmoil to Hope” that is available in 29 languages.

TWR President Lauren Libby says, “The COVID-19 crisis is a terrible catastrophe affecting the entire world. But it’s also an opportunity for people to discover the God who gives comfort, assurance and salvation in times of distress. We believe God opens doors at just the right time. TWR360 is poised to reach millions of people where they are – in their distress and confusion. Now is the time to dispel the darkness and bring the light of God’s truth to a suffering world.”

We as Christians can pray for those battling mental illness, that they may find hope in God.

“The Gospel, the Word itself is Good News, and that’s what we’re offering,” Creech says. “It’s God’s message of hope.”


Featured Photo courtesy of Flikr Creative Commons

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