More Antidepressants Prescribed For Teens During Pandemic

64 percent fewer visits to the family doctor, 41 percent more antidepressants: “These are two key figures that show how the corona pandemic has affected the health of children and adolescents,” said Peter Lehner, co-chair of the conference of social security agencies, at the opening of the 8th children and youth symposium of the umbrella association of social insurance. Experts discussed the effects of the pandemic on child and youth health online.

In his speech, Lehner emphasized that the pandemic should not “be seen as a singular event”, but that the crisis makes a large number of developments visible and accelerates them. “Corona relentlessly shows the weak points and deficits,” Lehner emphasized. “We have to create increased health awareness among young people. Health literacy belongs in the classroom and in the classroom.”

The pandemic had a deep impact on child and youth health. “Less through the infection itself than through collateral events,” said Reinhold Kerbl, head of the department for children and adolescents of the LKH Hochsteiermark in Leoben and general secretary of the Austrian Society for Pediatrics.

“Educational deficits, vaccine picking, delayed diagnosis and therapy, limited social experiences, lack of exercise and excessively long screen times can have negative effects in the long term.” Kerbl called for “as much normality as possible and making up for what has been neglected”.

Caroline Culen, clinical health psychologist and member of the management of the League for Child and Adolescent Health, emphasized that the mental health of children and adolescents, the health risk of child poverty, and equitable education and social learning experiences need special attention. “Inequalities are growing, social equality of opportunity is diminishing,” emphasized Culen.

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