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Climate Change And Its Impact on Mental Health

Categories: Mental Health


Although many will admit that Climate Change is one of the most terrifying problem nowadays, however there are various psychological responds to it form the complete rejection passing by feeling responsible ending with fear and anxiety. Most of the individuals have their reasons to react such so corresponding to how much they feel, perceive and exposure to Climate Change, moreover are they willing to take the responsibility to act toward it and seek to find a solution.I found this topic important because most of the popular arguments about Climate Change on a regular basis is from environmental, technological and economical scale, but no one shed the light on what people feel and how they response about it.

According to the report from the Yale Program on Climate Change Communication, the number of people who are worried from the climate change are raised tremendously in the past five years especially young students who study this topic in schools and universities (Gustafson et al.

, 2019).The purpose of this paper is to discuss causes, symptoms of the psychological problem of Climate Change and solutions to deal with such mental issue.


As with all major considers, it is usually how individuals go through on the inside that guides their reactions and attitudes. When societies realizing climate change, they apparently consider its effects on the surrounding environment, and also on their body health as an object. But climate change further has a considerable effect on people’s psychological status. Climate change-induced extreme weather conditions and other natural catastrophes have the most direct effects on psychological mental health in the trauma’s form and disturbance due to particular injuries, loss of a loved one, ruin or damage of personal ownership or even the loss of a source of income.

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Anxiety, anger, confusion and other strong negative emotions that can influence people’s initial response may be settled down, but to be taken over by post-traumatic stress disorder (Clayton et al.,2017). It does not refer the impacts of environmental changes on psychological aspect to hazards alone. There are also considerable mental health issues from longer-term climate change like the tremendous changes in temperatures and co2 emissions. Changes in temperature influence agriculture, infrastructure and livability, which disturb careers and aspects of living and can make people immigrate or change the way they used to live.

These implements may manage to changes in personal and professional identification, loss of social support networks, loss of a feel of control and autonomy and other psychological impacts such as feelings of powerlessness, worry and fatalism. It further relates significant degrees of stress and anxiety to physical health, such as a weak immune system. Doubts about current impacts of climate change can bring stress that can develop over time and ultimately starts stress-related troubles, such as substance abuse, anxiety disorders and depression (Clayton et al.,2017). Climate change is likewise delivering mental health impacts at the society. Both severe and long-term transformations in the environment have produced and raised enmity and intergroup hostility, and lead to the damage of social personality and cohesion.

Certain disadvantaged communities, such as primitive societies, minors and societies reliant on the natural environment can experience excessive mental health impacts.This paper is organized as follows: First, a description of the psychological problem of climate change to gain a close understanding of its influences on mental health. Second, a concentrated look on climate change psychological key issues. Third, a brief looks on the proposed solutions and techniques to deal with third mental issues from individual and society prospective. Finally, a conclusion of the psychological problem and explanations with anther opinion about such psychological issue.

Climate Change Influence on Psychological Statues

Climate change influences individual health primarily through three routes: direct, ecosystem mediated, and human-institution-mediated. Direct effects are differing as being intervened by the increasing in the recurrence, severity, and period of unusual high degrees of temperatures, and by increments in average annual temperature encountered driving to an increase in heat-related mortality. Increasing rate of other severe environmental changes, like floods and storms, raise the compromise of drowning and injury, harm to individual establishments, the increase of water-borne infection, and mental health sequelae. Ecosystem-mediated impacts introduce changes in the distribution and burden of vector-borne infections such as malaria and dengue and food and water-borne contagious disease. Human undernutrition from crop fail, society displacement from sea-level growth, and occupational health risks are illustrations of human-institution-mediated impacts (Watts et al.,2018)

Climate-related risks that influence the psychological status include extreme raising in temperature, severe weather incidents, and infections. It has been proved that extreme temperature raises behavioral disorders amongst individuals with pre-existing psychiatric sickness and the aged people who have poor thermoregulation. Extreme weather incidents, like flooding, hurricanes, and wildfires have been related to depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), suicidal thoughts, substance misuse, vicarious trauma, loss of personality and a loss of a sense of place, and powerlessness. Vector-borne diseases like West Nile Virus and Lyme disease may exacerbate psychological status issues for people with pre-existing mental health illness by leading to cognitive, neurological, and mental health issues (Hayes & Poland, 2018).

Compounded Stress

Climate change is considered as a parasitic cause of stress to our daily considerations, which may be bearable for someone has experience to deal with such stressors but can make an extra stress for those who have mature experiences or who are already having other stressors. Stress illustrates as an intuitive perception and a physiological feedback that take place when a human gets that he or she does not able to react and readjust to an applied case. Thus, climate-related stress is possibly to contribute to rises in stress-related issues, such as substance anxiety disorders, and depression. These issues have impacts on psychological and physical condition. People worry about subsequent hazards and feelings of susceptibility, powerlessness, and grief. also drive people further to involve in bad attitudes that have a negative impact on their health like smoking, unsafe actions, and undesirable eating styles (Clayton et al.,2017).Trauma and shockClimate change and natural disasters have circumstances on societies, which have a great possibility for direct mental stress from particular loss, or absence of income (Neria & Shultz, 2012).

Loss of autonomy and control

Climate change will increase specific everyday inconveniences, which can have psychological impacts on people’s sense of autonomy and control. The need to achieve necessary tasks is a basis psychological demand, central to individual well-being, and necessary needs may be exposed because of unsafe conditions. This may make mobility a challenge especially for the old people and those with disabilities, vulnerability to undesirable change in one’s environment can significantly weaken one’s sense of control over one’s way of life, which has negative impacts on mental health (Clayton et al.,2017).Loss of personal and occupational identityAs (Cresswell & Hoskins, 2008) stats place is not just a thing in the world place is also a way of seeing, knowing and understanding the world. A loss of identity correlated to climate change is likewise sometimes because of its effect on place-bound settlements. This is because of the tight relation between identity, and place-based profession, like agriculture and fishing. Because serious storms and high temperatures disrupt commercial activity, climate change may affect occupational identity. Loss of occupation become correlated to an expanded risk of depression accompanying natural hazards (Clayton et al.,2017).

Actions to Address the Consequences of Climate Change

Psychological adaptation requires an acknowledgement of the grave risks presented by climate change. It involves handling approaches to deal with the emotions and reflections that occur so that communities can deal with it and fight the problem rather than escaping from it by avoiding. Further it requires behavioral arrangement, in which societies transform and change their lifestyle to weaken the risk and preserve themselves. By expanding foams efficiently seal and weatherize homes, getting energy-efficient devices, using public transportation, declaring worries to elected representatives. Another suggests connecting with others who experience the same feelings in the community and environmental groups supports psychological adaptation. Thus, moving hopeful intentions from a static state where waiting for someone else to find a solution and replace it with a dynamic process of climate change mitigation and adaptation actions. More widely, emotional flexibility may be maintained by engaging with art, literature, and spirituality (Hayes et al.,2018).


Climate change affects psychological health in a mixture of direct, indirect, and overarching pathways affecting those most deprecated. The psychological health implications of climate change can lead to mental issues and disorders as well as affirmative psychosocial reactions. While the timing and purposes correlated to climate change and psychological health may differ, investing it challenging to determine the various relationships between climate change and psychological aspects, the opportunities of connecting mental health to climate change support climate mitigation as well as mental health action and psychosocial resiliency. It requires global commitments associations to support achieve global mental health and climate action. However, coordination amongst these commitments is required, as are concrete steps on behalf of health practitioners if mental health and a fluctuating climate is to be and focused on. Further, a reckoning with civil, environmental, and climate injustice is demanded if plans to address climate change and psychological health are to be ingrained objectively (Hayes et al.,2018).

Despite the fact that psychological mental problems are clear, there is another concept dealing with the problem which is the complete denial of the problem as a defense mechanism. Denial make people avoid dealing with the painful feelings. Authors said One reason for the refusal to accept the reality of climate change the probability of feeling it is unimportant goes up in the mind when means of satisfaction or existence are exposed, or called into question (Kleemann et al.,2001)The main points of the climate change psychological effects have been presented. After a general explanation of climate change key problem. An overview of the main techniques for overcoming these psychological effects has been pointed out. Climate change psychological effects are considered as a trade-off between the complexity of the global problem and the responsibility must be taken in the scope of the individuals, thus increasing the stress and requirements from the governments and psychological associations. The push for efficient and large driving range hybrid electric vehicle, and for producing energy from green and sustainable resources will include a future with low emissions and highly knowledgeable people with how to deal with such psychological issue.


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Climate Change And Its Impact on Mental Health. (2019, Aug 20). Retrieved from

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