Analyzing the Impact of COVID-19 on the Mental Health of Children With and Without Disabilities


  • Leo Duhl Packer Collegiate Institute
  • Patryk Perkowski



Disability, Mental Health, Depression, Anxiety, Child Development, Developmental Disabilities, Physical Disabilities, Cognitive Disabilities, COVID-19, Children's Mental Health


This study uses data from the 2019 National Health Interview Survey to examine baseline rates of anxiety and depression among U.S. children with and without disabilities, and then leverages the same data from 2020 and 2021 to analyze the impact the COVID-19 pandemic had on those rates. The 2019 baseline data presents a concerning situation, with all groups reporting very high rates of anxiety and depression, all higher than national rates among U.S. adults.  Children with disabilities experience particularly high rates of mental health issues, nearly 2-3 times as high as peers without disabilities.  Breaking out the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on children with disabilities versus without disabilities provides unique insights, since during the pandemic children without disabilities faced many of the physical and social constraints faced everyday by children with disabilities.  Mental health issues did become significantly more prevalent during the pandemic for all groups, though, children with no disabilities experienced the biggest percentage increase given their lower starting point. Overall, this study demonstrates the significant effect that physical, social, and emotional factors have on the mental well-being of children in the United States.  This is leading to a growing mental health crisis and highlights the importance of ensuring all communities, particularly those with disabilities or other limitations on physical and social activity, have access to adequate mental health treatment and support.


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References or Bibliography


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How to Cite

Duhl, L., & Perkowski, P. (2023). Analyzing the Impact of COVID-19 on the Mental Health of Children With and Without Disabilities. Journal of Student Research, 12(4).



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