The rollout of the various COVID-19 vaccines has brought relief to billions of people across the world, and many nations are still in desperate need of supplies to overcome the pandemic.
While the world hasn’t defeated Coronavirus yet, there is light at the end of the tunnel for many nations. However, medical practitioners will likely need to help patients struggling with various physical and mental health challenges for many years to come.
Continue reading to learn more about the medical aftermath of COVID-19 and how it may shape your education.
Mental Health Challenges
The COVID-19 pandemic will likely result in various mental health challenges for people from all walks of life. For example, those who experienced breathing difficulties caused by the virus are more likely to develop anxiety. The brain will become anxious when breathless, and the perceived breathing difficulties might become intertwined with anxious feelings. As a result, medication may not help patients overcome anxiety, and they may need cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and breathing exercises to help them manage the mental health disorder.
Also, there is more likely to be an increase in mental health conditions among young people. According to a study by Stanford University, enforced social distancing and school closures have placed an emotional toll on teenagers. As many will not have had access to psychological support, they will have an increased risk of developing depression or anxiety. Many adolescents may need to seek counseling or therapy at a respected depression treatment center, such as igniteteentreatment.com. Seeking treatment like this can help them overcome their personal problems and ensure that they are on the right track to recovery.
Many patients who have survived COVID-19 have reported long-lasting symptoms, such as:
- Brain fog
- Concentration difficulties
- Chest pain
- Sleeping problems
- Joint pain
- Shortness of breath
- An irregular heartbeat
As you can see, there are many potential long COVID symptoms, and it is too early to tell how long they will last. Also, there is no one-size-fits-all list of symptoms for long COVID, and even those who have recovered from a mild form could experience the above symptoms for many months or years.
Plus, it is widely believed that the virus can lead to long-lasting damage on multiple organs, such as the heart, brain, lungs, kidneys, and skin, which might stem from the virus itself or long-term hospitalization.
As COVID-19 is an infectious respiratory virus, many people with severe COVID-19 can develop acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). Unfortunately, ARDS can permanently scar a person’s lungs and lead to shortness of breath, tiredness, confusion, drowsiness, and rapid, shallow breathing. This has led to more patients being sent to intensive care units for life-saving treatment.
What’s more, COVID-19 may cause long-term lung damage, as it can increase inflammation in the lungs. Those living with long-term lung damage will likely experience fatigue, breathlessness, coughing, and a limited ability to exercise.
The true long-term impact of COVID-19 is not yet known. However, it has already changed healthcare forever, and it will likely shape a student’s medical education in the near and distant future.