The Ministry of Health and Welfare said on Thursday that the proportion of people at risk of developing depression has increased by over five percentage points this March from the same month last year.
This is based on a survey conducted from March 29th to April 12th on two,one-hundred-and-ten adults.
It is the fourth time the survey has been done since the start of Covid-19.
Participants were asked how much they felt depression due to the pandemic.
Respondents in their 20s and 30s saw the largest increases in depression,
Last year, when they were asked how much they feel down due to the pandemic, only around 13 percent of respondents in their 20s were classified as being at risk of becoming depressed, but by the most recent survey, that figure had jumped to 30 percent.
Those in their 30s saw their risk of depression increase by almost seven percentage points. The figures for those in their 20s and 30s were around double that of respondents in their 60s, suggesting that young people could be suffering more mental difficulties than older generations.
People in their 20s and 30s also were more likely to have suicidal thoughts.
Experts say there are psychological reasons behind this.
"Since it has been hard to have social gatherings, people, especially the younger generations, have ended up feeling more helpless and depressed. In addition, the COVID-19 period has resulted in a widened wealth gap through stocks and real estate; this could have also led to young people feeling deprived and more depressed."
However, the expert stressed that it is more important to keep in mind that the pandemic will end eventually, and that people should use their spare time for self-development through hobbies or reading.
Seo Eunkyung, Arirang News.