The Dreadful Year on Mental Health


Jerome. Photos.

Joscelyn Osorio, Author

Students from Anaheim High school experience an increase in mental health needs as they start a new lifestyle, quarantined at home. Having to maintain an organized life through these circumstances.

After interviewing students who have been in such difficult situations, it’s obvious how drastic the changes from March 13, 2020, to this day are. 

Just as things were getting better for most of them, a huge turn took place. From being socially distanced, to being specifically quarantined, students have managed to stay home to remain safe avoiding COVID-19.

However, it is still one of their top priorities to continue their school year online. Adding on to their mental health crisis, distance learning has only provoked an increase in anxiety and stress. The world turned into a locked up in a box that keeps distractions and entertainment outside that box. As of now, students have tried multiple ways to find a way out, but seem to fall into a worse state of mind having zero ideas on how to recover. 

Odalys Castillo, a twelve grader, shares, “As of now quarantine has affected my mental health in both a positive and negative way. It has affected me in a positive way because it’s given me more time to reflect on my negative thoughts. It’s also had a negative impact on me because, with all the extra time I have, I have more time to overthink bad situations.”

Going more in-depth about how she manages to stay composed, she comments “ Some activities that have kept me from stressing is just listening to music and watching my favorite shows on Netflix.” We asked her the state of her mental health before this incident and how it has changed over time. “Before quarantine, I’d say that my mental health was alright because I would see my friends on a daily basis and they would always make me happy and laugh. My friends would keep my mind away from my negative thoughts. Homework also kept my mind busy the whole day. My mental health has changed drastically over quarantine because I had every single day by myself with my thoughts going wild inside my brain. Now that school has started I think my mental health has improved just slightly. I have some homework to distract me, but I’m still stressed because I don’t have much interaction with anyone,“ Odalys Castillo says. To end the conversation on mental health in the year 2020, we asked which caused more stress, quarantine, or school? “Quarantine has affected my mental health more than school because while in school my stress would most likely circle around homework and upcoming tests. However, during quarantine, my mind is thinking about other things other than homework and school life.”. 

Omar Sanchez, who’s also a twelve grader was asked the same questions. He states, “Quarantine has not affected my mental health as much as it made me more calm. I have played video games, done exercise, and talked with my girlfriend through the phone to make me feel better. My mental health during quarantine has not changed much because school caused me stress yet I was still happy. Ever since school started my stress levels have risen. The fact that it’s online makes it worse for me to pay attention and actually learn. Quarantine has done less to my mental health than school because school is stressful.” 

It’s clear that students are being challenged during these times. It is part of the school’s profession to make sure students are motivated and in a positive mindset as they proceed to continue learning safely. This is why something must be done to allow the students to know that stressing and harming themselves mentally can be rehabilitated with their help and attention.