The impact of mental health under lockdown
A lot of people who suffer from depression face a lot of stigma and neglect from their families and communities.
According to the Mental Health Federation of SA, more than 17 million people in South Africans are dealing with depression, substance abuse, anxiety, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia.
Nomonde Khuzwayo, who was recently laid off from her job as a housekeeper due to corona virus pandemic has had a difficult time as she feels greatly overwhelmed with life.
“Losing my husband was what triggered the depression for me. In 2012 I was diagnosed with depression and hospitalised in a mental institution for 6 weeks as time went by I proceeded with the treatment and found ways to cope. Now losing my job I feel like I’m in a dark whole all over again. I wake up in the middle of the night shaking, even the simplest of things like taking a shower, picking out clothes to wear and playing with my children have become so difficult and frustrating”, said Khuzwayo.
Grace Tembe, a therapist from the Kuselo Centre, says the impact of the pandemic will have negative effects on the mental health of South Africans as many jobs are being threatened and now more than ever we need to practise Ubuntu and lend a helping hand where needed.
Khuzwayo hopes to find a job soon as she is the sole breadwinner in her family of 5.
“Depression is a silent killer and we need to educate ourselves in order to create a platform of open dialogue and kill the stigma health issues,” added Tembe.