The poll was staged between 2 and 9 April and involved 44,000 people. The figures for youngsters in particular are alarming: 3 in 10 youngsters is nursing a depressive disorder, "a huge increase", Sciensano says. The institute compared the present figures to those of 2018.
Stefaan Demarest of Sciensano says that each age category is affected, but the impact is biggest on youngsters. While 3 in 10 youngsters are being confronted with a depressive disorder now, this number is about half (16 percent) for the population in general (compared to 10 percent two years ago). Demarest says that "youngsters went to school, met friends or went out. All this has come to an end, all of a sudden, and that's tough."