Google searches for anxiety highest in over 16 years

Published Aug 25, 2020


DURBAN - A new study has found that anxiety-related Google searches reached a record high amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The study conducted by researchers from the

indicated that SARS-CoV-2 infection may itself lead to psychiatric symptoms in some patients, including delirium and psychosis.

Meanwhile the South African Depression and Anxiety Group (Sadag) says the call volumes to their helpline doubled, when Covid-19 lockdowns were first instituted. But due to the social distancing regulations, counsellors could no longer be sent into its call centre. Instead, it arranged for calls to its helplines to be routed through an app.

“And now nearly five months into lockdown, the impact on mental health has been immense - people have intense anxiety, depression, lost their jobs and no money, as well as relapses due to not seeking treatment. People are struggling with all aspects of their life, work, family, children,” said Sadag operations director Cassey Chambers.