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Narrative Review

Vol. 20 No. 2 (2022): New Horizons: Innovation in Medicine

Implication of COVID-19 on Post-Secondary Students’ Mental Health: A Review

July 21, 2021


Introduction: Nearing two years into the current pandemic, COVID-19 is recognized worldwide for its devastating physical effects, with mandatory restrictions implemented to prevent the transmission of SARS-CoV-2. However, the world is only beginning to understand the pandemic’s mental and social side effects. As such, current research on consequential mental health from COVID-19 is still novel, and there is much more to be learned concerning the long-term psychological effects and damage from the pandemic.

Discussion: The combination of online learning and social isolation due to COVID-19 has affected post-secondary students across North America as it relates to their overall well-being and mental health. Researchers have aimed to examine the psychological impact on students’ mental health, primarily through cross-sectional studies and self-reported surveys.

Conclusion: Studies have determined that COVID-19 has increased mental health symptoms such as depression, anxiety, PTSD, as well as increased feelings of isolation, loneliness, and fatigue. Furthermore, drinking and substance use, poor sleeping patterns, and screen time have risen as a result of the ongoing pandemic.

Relevance: These findings call for post-secondary institutions, health care providers, and governments to prioritize the mental health of future generations while providing support and intervention programs. Future research should focus on further investigating COVID-19’s long-term effects on the mental health of post-secondary students and exploring prevention methods.


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