AceShowbiz - Howie Mandel has candidly shared how being locked up in his home after testing positive for COVID-19 sent him into a mental health crisis. In a new interview, the "America's Got Talent" judge revealed that he was "incredibly depressed."
During a video chat with TMZ, published on Wednesday, April 27, the 66-year-old TV personality shared his belief that he contracted the virus while attending the Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards on April 10. While he didn't get slimed during the show, he joked, "I was, with a virus, apparently." He added, "I'm vaxxed, and I'm boosted, so my symptoms weren't terrible. But knowing me... I would have rather taken the mental pain of me being locked in a room for 10 days, not going near anybody."
"I went insane," Howie admitted, "I still feel like I'm recovering from that, the insanity. And I'm not joking. I got incredibly depressed, incredibly neurotic." He went on explaining, "My only panacea to my physical health and my mental health is distracting myself. You can't distract yourself for 10 days alone in a room."
Howie later unveiled that he's currently "in therapy." The father of three continued, "I take medication and I do things. But for years and years, there was a stigma, and I think there still is, a stigma attached to mental health," before adding that it's "healing to talk about it." He then concluded, "It's just good to be out of the room!"
This wasn't the first time Howie opened up about his depression. Last September, he admitted that he was "teetering" on the brink of depression after the coronavirus pandemic exacerbated his struggles with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD).
"People have jokingly said, 'You've been planning for this.' It's a nightmare for me, it's really hard," Howie told TMZ at the time. "Honestly, I'm really down and teetering on depression right now as we speak," he continued, before further elaborating, "You see a high wire act on 'AGT', they maintain their balance and don't fall, I feel that's how I live."
Despite struggling with depression, Howie noted that he tried to put on a happy face. "I have a smile and I get to do wonderful things and have an amazing life and amazing family, amazing support, medically, but I'm not going to lie to you, this is really crazy hard," so said the "Deal or No Deal" former host.