Two in three Brits are worried they won't be able to afford basic necessities such as food and clothing, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
A staggering 71% of Brits told My Online Therapy they are worried about not having enough money to pay their rent, mortgage and utility bills during the coronavirus crisis – with a quarter even describing themselves as “extremely worried.”
What's even more concerning, 67% of Brits may not be able to afford essentials, such as food and clothes, the survey of 1,000 by the virtual psychology clinic found.
More than a third (36%) of people said the financial blow caused by COVID-19 has negatively affected their well-being as they struggle with how they will reckon with their finances – making money worries the largest single factor contributing to stress, anxiety and depression during the pandemic.
Taking all factors into account, the crisis has had a negative impact on seven in 10 or 69% of Brits's mental health, the survey found.
Adding to the financial strain already felt by a vast majority of Brits, the furlough scheme is coming to an end at the end of October – meaning there is heightened anxiety and stress related to debt and other financial issues.
Nearly half (49%) of Brits are worried about the furlough scheme coming to an end, while 54% are worried they or someone in their household will lose their job when the scheme grinds to a halt on 31 October.
Second to finances, 34% of Brits said relationships have had the largest negative impact on their mental health amid the pandemic. More than a third (34%) revealed that COVID-19 has put a strain on their relationship with their family, while 30% said it has put tension on their relationship with their partner. 26% admitted that it has had a negative impact on their friendships.
Work and life changes have also been big stressors over the last few months, with a third and a quarter (26%) of respondents, respectively, citing these as having the biggest negative impact on their mental well-being.
However, the negative impact of body image issues has actually decreased during the pandemic – 22% of Brits said body image issues have negatively impacted their mental health since March, compared to 31% pre-pandemic.
“The world as we know it has changed dramatically as we experience the unprecedented turmoil caused by coronavirus, and it is clear that this has had a considerable impact on our mental health,” said Elettra Bianchi Dennerlein, co-founder of My Online Therapy.
“Britons all over the country are experiencing heightened anxiety amid the pandemic, which is increasing demand for mental health services and putting a strain on the NHS services that are available.
“Prioritising mental health has never been more critical as it is absolutely fundamental to our overall health and wellbeing.”
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