Poor mental health may increase your COVID-19 infection risk

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At the height of the pandemic, news and policy media focused on how the COVID-19 pandemic was contributing to poor mental health.

However, few studies examined whether the reverse might be true, that prior poor mental health may be associated with higher rates of COVID-19 infection.

In a new study from Yale, researchers found that areas with greater vulnerability in poor mental health prior to the pandemic have a greater burden of COVID-19.

The team used Using aggregated survey data from 2,839 US counties from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS).

They determined that between 2010 and 2019, a total of 2,172 counties (77%) experienced significant increases in the average number of poor mental health days including depression, stress, and problems with emotions.

Further analysis showed that higher days of poor mental health in 2019 had a robust association with the rate of COVID-19 infections in 2020.

The team showed that the association between poorer mental health days and COVID-19 infection was not stronger across counties in the Southern states and was being driven by a few states, at least statistically—Arizona, Montana, and Nevada.

The study provides empirical evidence to support ongoing conversations about the urgent need for mental health care to be delivered at the community level.

If you care about mental health, please read studies about middle-aged Americans are stressed and struggle with physical and mental health and findings of drinking alcohol for a long time may cause these mental problems.

For more information about anxiety and depression, please see recent studies about this natural food supplement may help relieve anxiety and results showing that defying your body clock may lead to depression, anxiety.

The study is published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine. One author of the study is Yusuf Ransome, DrPH.

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