We all know that the pandemic has created stress for everyone. Adults and children are all experiencing a mental health crisis because of COVID-19’s impact on our everyday lives. Between virtual learning difficulties and other struggles, all families are feeling the negative effects on their wellbeing.
However, researchers now say that financial stress impacts women’s mental health the most, not other factors.
During a presentation for the British Sociological Association, Dr. Amy Andrada of the University of Edinburgh shared that women between the ages of 20 and 39 have experienced the most significant changes in their wellbeing over the past year. According to Dr. Andrada, women experienced the most severe mental health impacts from the onset of the pandemic.
Furthermore, Dr. Andrada and her team say financial stress has impacted women’s mental health the most during the pandemic — even more than the loneliness that comes from living alone or spending less time with close friends.
According to the data provided by researchers to Phys.org, women from 20 to 39 who were already struggling financially before the pandemic reported a 27 percent decline in wellbeing between 2019 and 2020.
These declines in wellbeing remained consistent throughout the pandemic, with very little change.
Men also experienced declines, though not to the same degree. In fact, the only people who experienced a positive change in their mental health were people over the age of 80.
For men, living with a partner helped reverse the effects of the pandemic on their wellbeing. However, living with a partner didn’t help women to the same degree.
Researchers at the University of Edinburgh surveyed 7,200 people using a 12-item General Health Questionnaire for this study. The questions measured:
•Each participant’s ability to concentrate
•Their sleep patterns
•Their feelings of stress
•Other questions to measure stress levels and mental health
Given the fact that more women than ever before are raising their kids alone, and many moms lost their jobs during the pandemic, these financial stresses are understandable. Hopefully, as more people get vaccines and COVID-19 cases continue to decline, these issues will improve.
Previously Published on Moms.com