Men and women footballers might experience a surge in mental health issues because of the lockdown that was imposed by many countries as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak. Currently, this deadly virus has affected more than 2.5 million people with a death toll of over 185,000.
The most affected country is the USA, with more than 850,000 cases and over 48,000 death. Overall, COVID-19 has affected more than 210 countries, and every day we see a spike in numbers, and we are yet to know when this pandemic will come to an end.
Globally, many people are struggling because of the threat and fear this virus is impacting on the economy. Also, an extended lockdown may bring about the loss of normal life that most of us used to take for granted.
COVID-19 can affect anyone from all walks of life, and it doesn’t matter who you’re or the class you fall in. We have seen the Prime Minister of the UK, Boris Johnson, admitted to the hospital because of experiencing severe symptoms. The good news is that he is stable and recuperating well.
Prince Charles, the heir to the British throne, was the other day diagnosed with coronavirus, and now he has fully recovered from the virus, according to his royal doctor. So, this means professional footballers, be it men or women, are not immune to this deadly virus.
Daniele Rugani, a Juventus player, was the first professional footballer to contract COVID-19, but he as fully recovered. We have had many other men footballers getting the virus and coming out of it. As long as someone has strong immunity, and is taken care of by health workers, then there is a high likelihood of recovering after contracting COVID-19.
The worst scenario is that most of these active footballers are no longer training or playing games like before. They are now in lockdown, something that is messing with their mental issues.
According to FIFPRO (a global representative body for footballers) has released a new survey that shows the percentage of players with symptoms of depression and anxiety has doubled since the lockdowns and curfews were imposed.
FIFPRO survey involved more than 1600 players in those countries with drastic lockdown measures. The results showed that 13% of men and 22% of women reported symptoms of depression, and 16% of men and 18% of women had symptoms of generalized anxiety.
The only possible solution to prevent footballers from going deep into depression and anxiety is to mimic their daily routines rush through workouts and keeping close contact with their teammates and coaches through online interaction.
Most footballers are now coming into terms with the notion of self-isolation, and most of the time, it can be very punishing, especially to those with previous cases of depression. All they can do now is to stay home and stay safe as they wait for medical scientists and researchers to come up with a vaccine to combat COVID-19.