A Quarter of People who had COVID-19 Develop Psychological Problems
At least a quarter of COVID-19 survivors develop psychological and psychiatric problems. The virus also has a serious effect on the psyche of medical staff. This is shown by studies made in China, but these data are confirmed in Bulgaria, said Dr. Stefan Popov, head of the Clinic of Psychiatry at the University Hospital "St. George" in Plovdiv.
More and more patients recovering physically after COVID-19 are developing psychiatric and neurological problems. And it's not just people who have had the virus, experts say.
"At least 25% of people who had covid have some psychiatric symptoms. They range from mild to moderate to severe anxiety, varying degrees of depressive reactions, insomnia and, most importantly, a new COVID phobia, there is a fear in many people that is already becoming a sickness, and this makes them constantly examine themselves," said Assoc. Prof. Stefan Popov, head of the Clinic of Psychiatry at St. George University Hospital in Plovdiv.
It is through constant testing that this woman is fighting her fear of COVID-19.
"Before I got COVID at least every other day I did tests because I was very scared, after I got vaccinated I had a moment of calmness, a period, but then I started to get scared again and so on until I got really sick. I got infected, but thanks to the vaccines, Covid was easier to get through, but the fear did not leave me, I continue to do tests," said a patient.
However, people with such problems rarely seek the help of specialists and their complaints deepen. The situation is similar for medics, who are also seriously affected by COVID-19.
"Colleagues are not spared the stigma of not seeking psychiatric counseling, but they definitely suffer from what we call very severe personal distress," said Assoc. Prof. Stefan Popov.
If the pandemic continues for another year, there will be mass cases of burnout among doctors, predicts Assoc. Prof. Popov. According to him, first-line medics need not only additional financial but also psychological help.
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