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Twitter uses dark humor to roast study that calls pandemic mental health crisis ‘minimal’


A BBC tweet on mental health amid the COVID-19 pandemic has inspired a slew of dark and funny lockdown anecdotes.

The subject of the original tweet was no joke: it related to a BBC article about research into the mental health consequences of the pandemic. The title? “The mental health crisis due to the Covid pandemic was minimal ― study.”

Canadian researchers analyzed 137 studies on mental health amid the pandemic and found a “high level of resilience” at the “population level”, the published paper reads.

However, the research had one big caveat. As the BBC noted:

The review did not focus on low-income countries, nor did it focus specifically on children, young people and people with existing problems, the groups most likely to be affected, according to experts, and risks hiding important effects among disadvantaged groups.

On Twitter, several readers pointed out that the research appears to have excluded many of the people whose mental health appears to be most affected. (The study itself acknowledges this, noting in the abstract: “The high risk of bias in many studies and substantial heterogeneity suggest caution in interpreting the results.”)

Additionally, other research – some of which has already been reported by the BBC – has found evidence of significant mental health effects resulting from the pandemic. A World Health Organization report last year, for example, found that in the first year of the pandemic, anxiety and depression increased by 25% worldwide.

While some Twitter users were quick to point out flaws in the study’s latest finding (the BBC’s tweet now has an edited ‘context added’ rating), others took a humorous approach. Many people have used the title as a jumping off point to talk about times early in the pandemic when things got particularly weird.

There was a fair amount of pet content.

And lots of memories of getting into the Animal Crossing game a little too much.

But most of the anecdotes were, frankly, hard to categorize.

Need help with a substance use disorder or mental health issues? In the United States, call 800-662-HELP (4357) for SAMHSA National Helpline.

The Huffington Gt

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