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Socioeconomic Status and Lifestyles as Determinants of Mental Health during the COVID-19 Outbreak

A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601). This special issue belongs to the section "Mental Health".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 October 2022) | Viewed by 80901

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Department of Biomedicine, Biotechnology, and Public Health, University of Cádiz, 11009 Cádiz, Spain
Interests: social determinants of health; health inequalities; complex systems; research methodology; biostatistics

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Co-Guest Editor
Department of Social, Developmental and Educational Psychology, Universidad de Huelva, 21071 Huelva, Spain
Interests: mental health; children; adolescent; lifestyles; positive development
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Co-Guest Editor
Department of Statistics and Operative Research, University of Cadiz, 11510 Cádiz, Spain
Interests: biostatistics; research methodology; mental health
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Research evidence regarding social inequalities in health has revealed that the higher the socioeconomic status (SES) is, the lower the prevalence of health problems, illness, disease, and death. Within the theoretical approach of the social production of disease, the origin of health inequalities is a consequence of the unequal distribution of scarce economic and social resources that are generated in the intersection of economic processes of the market, public, and social policies. Therefore, SES is considered to be a structural determinant of health, while lifestyles are generally contemplated as intermediary determinants in the relationship between SES and (physical and mental) health. Although the role of these intermediary factors in mediating the association between SES and health has been discussed broadly in the public health literature, the multidimensional interdependence between SES, healthy habits, risky behaviors, and health has received limited or partial attention.

We know that illness and disease are particularly pronounced among low-SES groups and that health risk factors can be prevented through healthy lifestyles (e.g., physical activity, fresh food, and healthy sleep habits). However, because economically deprived geographical areas might present a higher prevalence of risk factors (i.e., poor-quality food, drug access, poor housing conditions, higher exposure to environmental risks and pollution), it is not clear whether low-SES people are as successful in their attempts to make lifestyle changes as high-SES people.

In this Special Issue, we invite researchers in public health, epidemiology, health economics, biostatistics, psychology, and sociology to submit high-quality empirical papers or systematic reviews that will further broaden our understanding of the factors that can address the mediating role of lifestyles in social inequalities in mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic. Papers that include qualitative, quantitative, mixed-methods or more innovative computational approaches are welcome, as are studies that discuss the design, implementation, and evaluation of behavioral and policy interventions aiming to address mental health problems derived from this new pandemic.

Prof. Dr. Javier Álvarez Gálvez
Dr. Diego Gomez-Baya
Dr. Carolina Lagares-Franco
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

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Keywords

  • Social determinants of health
  • Socioeconomic status
  • Lifestyles
  • Wellbeing
  • Health inequalities
  • Health disparities
  • COVID-19

Published Papers (16 papers)

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Research

17 pages, 1319 KiB  
Article
Multimorbidity Patterns and Their Association with Social Determinants, Mental and Physical Health during the COVID-19 Pandemic
by Jesús Carretero-Bravo, Begoña Ramos-Fiol, Esther Ortega-Martín, Víctor Suárez-Lledó, Alejandro Salazar, Cristina O’Ferrall-González, María Dueñas, Juan Luis Peralta-Sáez, Juan Luis González-Caballero, Juan Antonio Cordoba-Doña, Carolina Lagares-Franco, José Manuel Martínez-Nieto, José Almenara-Barrios and Javier Álvarez-Gálvez
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(24), 16839; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph192416839 - 15 Dec 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1936
Abstract
Background: The challenge posed by multimorbidity makes it necessary to look at new forms of prevention, a fact that has become heightened in the context of the pandemic. We designed a questionnaire to detect multimorbidity patterns in people over 50 and to associate [...] Read more.
Background: The challenge posed by multimorbidity makes it necessary to look at new forms of prevention, a fact that has become heightened in the context of the pandemic. We designed a questionnaire to detect multimorbidity patterns in people over 50 and to associate these patterns with mental and physical health, COVID-19, and possible social inequalities. Methods: This was an observational study conducted through a telephone interview. The sample size was 1592 individuals with multimorbidity. We use Latent Class Analysis to detect patterns and SF-12 scale to measure mental and physical quality-of-life health. We introduced the two dimensions of health and other social determinants in a multinomial regression model. Results: We obtained a model with five patterns (entropy = 0.727): ‘Relative Healthy’, ‘Cardiometabolic’, ‘Musculoskeletal’, ‘Musculoskeletal and Mental’, and ‘Complex Multimorbidity’. We found some differences in mental and physical health among patterns and COVID-19 diagnoses, and some social determinants were significant in the multinomial regression. Conclusions: We identified that prevention requires the location of certain inequalities associated with the multimorbidity patterns and how physical and mental health have been affected not only by the patterns but also by COVID-19. These findings may be critical in future interventions by health services and governments. Full article
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14 pages, 367 KiB  
Article
Relationship between Income and Mental Health during the COVID-19 Pandemic in China
by Mingna Li, Bo Zhou and Bingbin Hu
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(15), 8944; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19158944 - 22 Jul 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1764
Abstract
Mental health problems represent one most pressing concerns in the world, which produce costly consequences for individuals, families and society as a whole. One of the determinants on mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic is income. To complement relevant research and provide valuable [...] Read more.
Mental health problems represent one most pressing concerns in the world, which produce costly consequences for individuals, families and society as a whole. One of the determinants on mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic is income. To complement relevant research and provide valuable recommendations for governments and societies, this study investigates the nexus between income and mental health in China by employing 8049 observations from the 2020 China Family Panel Studies. Using ordinary least squares regression we find the significant positive relationship between income and mental health, and estimate the effect of income on mental health. Furthermore, this effect is heterogeneous depending on individuals’ education level and registered residence type. Finally, individuals’ economic status and happiness are shown to be the potential mechanism through which the effect of income on mental health operates. Full article
15 pages, 1359 KiB  
Article
Can Fear of COVID-19 Be Predicted by Religiosity and Trust in Institutions among Young Adults? A Prospective Cross-National Study
by Dominika Ochnik, Aleksandra M. Rogowska, Ana Arzenšek and Joy Benatov
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(11), 6766; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19116766 - 01 Jun 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1284
Abstract
The aim of this study was to reveal whether religiosity and trust in institutions are longitudinal predictors of change in fear of COVID-19 (FCV-19) across Poland, Germany, Slovenia, and Israel among young adults over a three-month period. The representative sample consisted of 1723 [...] Read more.
The aim of this study was to reveal whether religiosity and trust in institutions are longitudinal predictors of change in fear of COVID-19 (FCV-19) across Poland, Germany, Slovenia, and Israel among young adults over a three-month period. The representative sample consisted of 1723 participants between the ages of 20 and 40 years (M = 30.74, SD = 5.74) across Poland (n = 446), Germany (n = 418), Slovenia (n = 431), and Israel (n = 428). The first measurement was carried out in February 2020 and the second was conducted in May/June 2020. A repeated-measures, two-way, mixed-factor ANOVA was performed to examine changes over time (T) and across countries (C) as well as the interaction of time and country (TxC) for FCV-19, religiosity, and trust in institutions. The results showed a significant decrease over time and differences between countries in all variables, as well as in TxC for FCV-19 and trust in institutions. Linear generalized estimating equations (GEEs) were used to assess the longitudinal change between T1 and T2 in FCV-19, including religiosity and trust in institutions as predictors, country as a factor, and gender and age as confounders. Female gender, religiosity, and trust in institutions were found to be significant longitudinal predictors of change in FCV-19. Country was a significant moderator of the relationship between trust in institutions and FCV-19, with the highest result achieved in Poland. Religiosity and trust in institutions were positive predictors of change in fear of COVID-19 among young adults across countries. Religious and governmental institutions should take this into consideration when communicating with believers and citizens during challenging situations. Full article
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11 pages, 762 KiB  
Article
Changes in Mental Health during the COVID-19 Pandemic among Representative Sample of Young Adults from Germany, Israel, Poland, and Slovenia: A Longitudinal Study
by Dominika Ochnik, Ana Arzenšek, Aleksandra M. Rogowska, Urša Mars Bitenc and Joy Benatov
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(10), 5794; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19105794 - 10 May 2022
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 2153
Abstract
The aim of this cross-national longitudinal study was to identify a change in mental health indicators: coronavirus-related post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), perceived stress, and fear of vaccination (FoVac). The first measurement (T1) took place in February 2021, and the second (T2) took place [...] Read more.
The aim of this cross-national longitudinal study was to identify a change in mental health indicators: coronavirus-related post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), perceived stress, and fear of vaccination (FoVac). The first measurement (T1) took place in February 2021, and the second (T2) took place in May–June 2021. The sample consisted of 1723 participants across Germany, Israel, Poland, and Slovenia, between the age of 20 and 40 (M = 30.74, SD = 5.74). A paired-samples Student’s t-test was used for testing the differences between T1 and T2. A repeated measures two-way ANOVA was performed to examine changes over time (T) and across the countries (C). A significant although small decrease at T2 was found for coronavirus-related PTSD, perceived stress, and FoVac. A significant main effect was found for T, C, and TxC for all variables, except the interaction effect for coronavirus-related PTSD and perceived stress. A medium effect size was found for coronavirus-related PTSD and FoVac across countries as well as perceived stress over time. A small effect size was revealed for coronavirus-related PTSD and FoVac over time, perceived stress across countries, and interaction for FoVac. A significant improvement in mental health was demonstrated across the four countries (particularly in Israel); however, there were still differences among each of them. Therefore, the cross-national context should be taken into consideration when analyzing the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on mental health. Full article
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12 pages, 347 KiB  
Article
Change in Depression and Its Determinants during the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Longitudinal Examination among Racially/Ethnically Diverse US Adults
by Yuzi Zhang, Kathryn M. Janda, Nalini Ranjit, Deborah Salvo, Aida Nielsen and Alexandra van den Berg
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(3), 1194; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19031194 - 21 Jan 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2319
Abstract
This study examined longitudinal data to identify changes in the occurrence of depressive symptoms, and to explore if such changes were associated with socio-demographic, movement behaviors, and health variables during the COVID-19 pandemic, among a diverse sample of central Texas residents. Participants who [...] Read more.
This study examined longitudinal data to identify changes in the occurrence of depressive symptoms, and to explore if such changes were associated with socio-demographic, movement behaviors, and health variables during the COVID-19 pandemic, among a diverse sample of central Texas residents. Participants who completed two online surveys in 2020 (in June and November) from an on-going longitudinal study were included. Depressive symptoms were measured by Patient Health Questionnaire-2. Change in depressive symptoms’ occurrence status between the two time points was categorized into (1) stable/improved, and (2) consistent depressive symptoms/declined. Sociodemographic factors, movement behaviors and health data were self-reported. Statistical analyses utilized descriptive statistics and logistical regression. Among a total of 290 individuals (84.1% female; 71.0% racial/ethnic minorities), 13.5% were categorized as consistent depressive symptoms/declined. Multivariable logistic regression indicated that racial/ethnic minorities, older age, and increased physical activity were associated with a lower likelihood, while greater sedentary time was associated with higher likelihood of consistent depressive symptoms/declined status. Between 3 months and 8 months into the pandemic, various socio-demographic and behavioral variables were associated with changes in depressive symptoms’ occurrence status. Future research should explore the longer-term impacts of COVID-19 on depression among a diverse population and identify risk factors for depression. Full article
14 pages, 1819 KiB  
Article
Maternal Mental Health under COVID-19 Pandemic in Thailand
by Wachiranun Sirikul, Krongporn Ongprasert, Chanodom Piankusol and Penprapa Siviroj
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 347; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010347 - 29 Dec 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2059
Abstract
Numerous nations have implemented lockdown measures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. As a consequence of the lockdown on daily living, social participation, and health service accessibility, vulnerable people, for example, new mothers, may experience an increase in mental health problems. This cross-sectional [...] Read more.
Numerous nations have implemented lockdown measures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. As a consequence of the lockdown on daily living, social participation, and health service accessibility, vulnerable people, for example, new mothers, may experience an increase in mental health problems. This cross-sectional survey was conducted to investigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown on Thai new mothers and the variables affecting their mental health. The survey data were collected from 903 Thai mothers with infants aged 0–12 months using an online platform and a face-to-face interview questionnaire survey between 17 July and 17 October 2020, during the first nationwide COVID-19 lockdown period. For the final analysis, there were 862 participants who completed all of the questions. The full exploratory analysis was performed by multivariable linear regression to identify the variables influencing maternal mental health. Our study demonstrated that new mothers reported feeling a high extent to some extent of worry (44.9%), increased appetite (40.4%), becoming easily annoyed or irritable (39.1%), and feeling down (33.5%), whereas 82.7% felt able to cope with the first lockdown situation. Practiced relaxation techniques were associated with positive maternal mental health (adjusted β = 1.05, 95% CI 0.57 to 1.52, p < 0.001). The perceived impact of the COVID-19 lockdown was on the household’s ability to pay for rent, to make mortgage payments (adjusted β = −1.59, 95% CI −2.87 to −0.36, p = 0.011), the household’s ability to pay for other essentials, such as utilities and medication (adjusted β = −1.99, 95% CI −3.16 to −0.81, p = 0.001), household crowding after lockdown (adjusted β = −3.46, 95% CI −4.86 to −2.06, p < 0.001), and not going outside or doing outdoor activities (adjusted β = −2.22, 95% CI −3.35 to −1.08, p < 0.001). These impacts were significantly associated with negative mental health. In conclusion, our results emphasize the critical need for continuous monitoring of maternal mental health and developing an effective response strategy and activity for promoting maternal mental health under the stress of repetitive lockdowns and increased economic pressures. Full article
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13 pages, 366 KiB  
Article
Mental Distress during the Coronavirus Pandemic in Israel: Who Are the Most Vulnerable?
by Tehila Refaeli and Michal Krumer-Nevo
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(1), 124; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19010124 - 23 Dec 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1750
Abstract
Based on Pearlin’s stress process model and the social inequality approach to health, this study used a social lens to explore the role of socioeconomic inequities in mental distress during the COVID-19 pandemic in Israel. Specifically, we examined people’s pre-pandemic sociodemographic characteristics and [...] Read more.
Based on Pearlin’s stress process model and the social inequality approach to health, this study used a social lens to explore the role of socioeconomic inequities in mental distress during the COVID-19 pandemic in Israel. Specifically, we examined people’s pre-pandemic sociodemographic characteristics and economic situation, and the economic effects of the pandemic itself on mental distress. A real-time survey was conducted in May 2020 among 273 adults (ages 20–68), and hierarchical linear models were employed. Findings indicated that groups vulnerable to mental distress in routine times (e.g., women, people with economic difficulties) showed the same pattern during the pandemic. Not only was unemployment related to mental distress, so too was a reduction in work hours. The pandemic’s economic effects (e.g., needing to take out loans, having a worsening financial situation) were also associated with increased mental distress. This study is one of very few studies to explore a wide range of socioeconomic factors and their association with mental distress during the current crisis. The findings call for broader interventions to alleviate the economic distress caused by the pandemic to promote mental health, especially for groups that were vulnerable before the crisis and those most affected economically following the pandemic. Full article
21 pages, 1225 KiB  
Article
Who Is Suffering from the “Corona Blues”? An Analysis of the Impacts of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Depression and Its Implications for Health Policy
by Sunhee Kim and Seoyong Kim
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(23), 12273; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph182312273 - 23 Nov 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2472
Abstract
COVID-19 is tremendously affecting not only social structures but also people’s psychological states. In particular, COVID-19 is negatively affecting psychological health, in particular, the depression. When individuals are experiencing the depression, there is increase in the suicide rate and occurrence of serious social [...] Read more.
COVID-19 is tremendously affecting not only social structures but also people’s psychological states. In particular, COVID-19 is negatively affecting psychological health, in particular, the depression. When individuals are experiencing the depression, there is increase in the suicide rate and occurrence of serious social problems. This study therefore examines factors affecting depression by using hypothesis testing. Previous studies have limitations in that they focus only on demographic variables or other specific variables. In contrast, this study focuses on the influences of four non-pandemic and seven pandemic-related variables on people’s depression. We analyze data from a social survey (N = 1525) in Korea which adopted the stratified quota sampling method. Results show that, first, among the demographic variables, young people experience depression to a greater extent than older people do. Second, among the non-pandemic variables, individuals with more social support, good health, optimism, and self-efficacy exhibit lower levels of depression. Third, among the factors related to COVID-19, fear of infection, financial instability, personal lifestyle changes, and poor health status increase depression. Full article
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12 pages, 636 KiB  
Article
Confinement Situation of the Spanish Population during the Health Crisis of COVID-19: Resilience Mediation Process in the Relationship of Dispositional Optimism and Psychological Well-Being
by Antonio Zayas, Ana Merchán-Clavellino, José Antonio López-Sánchez and Rocío Guil
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(12), 6190; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18126190 - 08 Jun 2021
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2842
Abstract
The pandemic generated by COVID-19 is one of the most complex challenges humanity has faced in recent years. This study aims to explore the levels of dispositional optimism, resilience and psychological well-being in the sociodemographic and economic situation produced during the state of [...] Read more.
The pandemic generated by COVID-19 is one of the most complex challenges humanity has faced in recent years. This study aims to explore the levels of dispositional optimism, resilience and psychological well-being in the sociodemographic and economic situation produced during the state of alarm and to investigate the resilience mediation between optimism and psychological well-being. The sample included 566 volunteers from Spain (73.5% women; M = 40.2 years, SD = 12.8). An ad hoc questionnaire was applied to request socioeconomic data and dispositional optimism (LOT-R). Resilience and psychological well-being were, respectively, evaluated by the Ryff scale and the Wagnild and Young scale. The results show that older and people with higher educational levels are more optimistic and have better psychological well-being. Well-being is also greater in married, divorced and widowed people and in those who have lived in outdoor spaces. However, those with spaced housing were more optimistic. Finally, it was found that the most optimistic people have better psychological well-being and that this is increased by the mediation process exercised by the ability to overcome adversity, provided age and educational level are controlled. It can be concluded that the design of preventive programs focused on improving strengths, positive emotions and skills in the population would be convenient to protect mental health. Full article
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18 pages, 1425 KiB  
Article
Impact of Changed Use of Greenspace during COVID-19 Pandemic on Depression and Anxiety
by Seulkee Heo, Miraj U. Desai, Sarah R. Lowe and Michelle L. Bell
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(11), 5842; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18115842 - 29 May 2021
Cited by 41 | Viewed by 6962
Abstract
The COVID-19 pandemic has had devastating consequences for health, social, and economic domains, but what has received far less focus is the effect on people’s relationship to vital ecological supports, including access to greenspace. We assessed patterns of greenspace use in relation to [...] Read more.
The COVID-19 pandemic has had devastating consequences for health, social, and economic domains, but what has received far less focus is the effect on people’s relationship to vital ecological supports, including access to greenspace. We assessed patterns of greenspace use in relation to individual and environmental factors and their relationship with experiencing psychological symptoms under the pandemic. We conducted an online survey recruiting participants from social media for adults in Korea for September–December 2020. The survey collected data on demographics, patterns of using greenspace during the pandemic, and major depression (MD) and generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) symptoms. The Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9) and the Generalized Anxiety Disorder 2-item (GAD-2) were applied to identify probable cases of MD and GAD. A logistic regression model assessed the association decreased visits to greenspace after the outbreak compared to 2019 and probable MD and GAD. Among the 322 survey participants, prevalence of probable MD and GAD were 19.3% and 14.9%, respectively. High rates of probable MD (23.3%) and GAD (19.4%) were found among persons currently having job-related and financial issues. Of the total participants, 64.9% reported decreased visits to greenspace after the COVID-19 outbreak. Persons with decreased visits to greenspace had 2.06 higher odds (95% CI: 0.91, 4.67, significant at p < 0.10) of probable MD at the time of the survey than persons whose visits to greenspace increased or did not change. Decreased visits to greenspace were not significantly associated with GAD (OR = 1.45, 95% CI: 0.63, 3.34). Findings suggest that barriers to greenspace use could deprive people of mental health benefits and affect mental health during pandemic; an alternative explanation is that those experiencing poor mental health may be less likely to visit greenspaces during pandemic. This implies the need of adequate interventions on greenspace uses under an outbreak especially focusing on how low-income populations may be more adversely affected by a pandemic and its policy responses. Full article
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11 pages, 372 KiB  
Article
Portuguese Nurses’ Stress, Anxiety, and Depression Reduction Strategies during the COVID-19 Outbreak
by Lara Guedes de Pinho, Francisco Sampaio, Carlos Sequeira, Laetitia Teixeira, César Fonseca and Manuel José Lopes
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(7), 3490; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18073490 - 27 Mar 2021
Cited by 29 | Viewed by 5461
Abstract
The COVID-19 pandemic has contributed to mental health problems worldwide. Nurses are particularly prone to stress because they directly care for individuals with suspected or confirmed cases of COVID-19. The aims of this study were (a) to explore the association between the mental [...] Read more.
The COVID-19 pandemic has contributed to mental health problems worldwide. Nurses are particularly prone to stress because they directly care for individuals with suspected or confirmed cases of COVID-19. The aims of this study were (a) to explore the association between the mental health promotion strategies used by nurses during the COVID-19 outbreak and their symptoms of depression, anxiety, and stress; (b) to compare the symptoms of depression, anxiety, and stress of mental health nurses to those of non-mental health nurses; and (c) to compare the frequency of use of mental health strategies of mental health nurses to those of non-mental health nurses. A cross-sectional study was conducted with a sample of 821 nurses. Univariate and multivariate regression models were developed to identify potential protective factors of depression, anxiety, and stress. The chi-square test was also used to compare the use of strategies among mental health and non-mental health nurses. Portuguese nurses demonstrated high symptoms of depressive symptoms, stress, and anxiety. Healthy eating, physical activity, rest between shifts, maintaining social contacts, verbalizing feelings/emotions, and spending less time searching for information about COVID-19 were associated with better mental health. Mental health nurses had less depression, anxiety, and stress, and used more strategies to promote mental health than other nurses. We consider it important to promote nurses’ mental health literacy by encouraging them to develop skills and strategies aimed at improving their resilience and ability to deal with difficult situations while caring for the population. Full article
16 pages, 1928 KiB  
Article
Mental Health among Adults during the COVID-19 Pandemic Lockdown: A Cross-Sectional Multi-Country Comparison
by Kele Ding, Jingzhen Yang, Ming-Kai Chin, Lindsay Sullivan, Giyasettin Demirhan, Veronica Violant-Holz, Ricardo R. Uvinha, Jianhui Dai, Xia Xu, Biljana Popeska, Zornitza Mladenova, Waheeda Khan, Garry Kuan, Govindasamy Balasekaran, Gary A. Smith and on behalf of Global Community Health–COVID-19 Collaborative Research Team
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(5), 2686; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18052686 - 07 Mar 2021
Cited by 45 | Viewed by 12675
Abstract
Despite the global impact of COVID-19, studies comparing the effects of COVID-19 on population mental health across countries are sparse. This study aimed to compare anxiety and depression symptoms during the COVID-19 lockdown among adults from 11 countries and to examine their associations [...] Read more.
Despite the global impact of COVID-19, studies comparing the effects of COVID-19 on population mental health across countries are sparse. This study aimed to compare anxiety and depression symptoms during the COVID-19 lockdown among adults from 11 countries and to examine their associations with country-level COVID-19 factors and personal COVID-19 exposure. A cross-sectional survey was conducted among adults (≥18 years) in 11 countries (Brazil, Bulgaria, China, India, Ireland, North Macedonia, Malaysia, Singapore, Spain, Turkey, United States). Mental health (anxiety, depression, resilient coping, hope) and other study data were collected between June–August 2020. Of the 13,263 participants, 62.8% were female and 51.7% were 18–34 years old. Participants living in Brazil had the highest anxiety and depression symptoms while participants living in Singapore had the lowest. Greater personal COVID-19 exposure was associated with increased anxiety and depression symptoms, but country-level COVID-19 factors were not. Higher levels of hope were associated with reduced anxiety and depression; higher levels of resilient coping were associated with reduced anxiety but not depression. Substantial variations exist in anxiety and depression symptoms across countries during the COVID-19 lockdown, with personal COVID-19 exposure being a significant risk factor. Strategies that mitigate COVID-19 exposure and enhance hope and resilience may reduce anxiety and depression during global emergencies. Full article
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14 pages, 478 KiB  
Article
The Impact of Social Support on Public Anxiety amidst the COVID-19 Pandemic in China
by Yibin Ao, Hao Zhu, Fanrong Meng, Yan Wang, Gui Ye, Linchuan Yang, Na Dong and Igor Martek
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(23), 9097; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17239097 - 06 Dec 2020
Cited by 35 | Viewed by 4660
Abstract
The recent coronavirus outbreak has captured worldwide attention. This study investigated the anxiety of the Chinese public and its relationship with social support during the early stage of the COVID-19 pandemic, thereby providing empirical support for interventions on improving the public’s mental health. [...] Read more.
The recent coronavirus outbreak has captured worldwide attention. This study investigated the anxiety of the Chinese public and its relationship with social support during the early stage of the COVID-19 pandemic, thereby providing empirical support for interventions on improving the public’s mental health. On the basis of an online questionnaire survey conducted on 10–18 February 2020, this study shows that 19.8%, 68.5%, and 11.1% of the respondents suffered mild anxiety, moderate anxiety, and severe anxiety, respectively. Significant differences are reported in state anxiety between people with different household incomes. There are significant differences in trait anxiety and state anxiety between different social support groups. Social support and trait anxiety are negatively correlated. Social support and state anxiety are negatively correlated. Social support affects state anxiety both directly and indirectly (through the mediation of trait anxiety). Therefore, during the COVID-19 pandemic, increasing public support for society can effectively reduce public anxiety. Full article
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17 pages, 942 KiB  
Article
Mental Health of Chinese Online Networkers under COVID-19: A Sociological Analysis of Survey Data
by Yang Xiao, Yanjie Bian and Lei Zhang
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(23), 8843; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17238843 - 28 Nov 2020
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2777
Abstract
This paper reports the results of a recent survey of Chinese WeChat networkers (n = 2015, August 2020) about China’s mental health conditions under COVID-19. The purpose of the survey was to measure symptoms of depression, anxiety, and somatization by using a [...] Read more.
This paper reports the results of a recent survey of Chinese WeChat networkers (n = 2015, August 2020) about China’s mental health conditions under COVID-19. The purpose of the survey was to measure symptoms of depression, anxiety, and somatization by using a standard 18-item battery and assess how the results were related to an individual’s socioeconomic status, lifestyle, and social capital under an ongoing pandemic. The survey reveals that the pandemic has had a significant impact, as the respondents had more serious mental symptoms when their residential communities exhibited a greater exposure to the spread of the virus. The socioeconomic status of the respondents was negatively associated with the mental symptoms. It modified the impact of COVID-19, and its effect was substantially mediated by measures of lifestyle and social capital. Full article
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17 pages, 400 KiB  
Article
COVID-19 Home Confinement Negatively Impacts Social Participation and Life Satisfaction: A Worldwide Multicenter Study
by Achraf Ammar, Hamdi Chtourou, Omar Boukhris, Khaled Trabelsi, Liwa Masmoudi, Michael Brach, Bassem Bouaziz, Ellen Bentlage, Daniella How, Mona Ahmed, Patrick Mueller, Notger Mueller, Hsen Hsouna, Asma Aloui, Omar Hammouda, Laisa Liane Paineiras-Domingos, Annemarie Braakman-Jansen, Christian Wrede, Sophia Bastoni, Carlos Soares Pernambuco, Leonardo Jose Mataruna-Dos-Santos, Morteza Taheri, Khadijeh Irandoust, Aïmen Khacharem, Nicola L. Bragazzi, Jana Strahler, Jad Adrian Washif, Albina Andreeva, Samira C. khoshnami, Evangelia Samara, Vasiliki Zisi, Parasanth Sankar, Waseem N. Ahmed, Mohamed Romdhani, Jan Delhey, Stephen J. Bailey, Nicholas T. Bott, Faiez Gargouri, Lotfi Chaari, Hadj Batatia, Gamal Mohamed Ali, Osama Abdelkarim, Mohamed Jarraya, Kais El Abed, Nizar Souissi, Lisette Van Gemert-Pijnen, Bryan L. Riemann, Laurel Riemann, Wassim Moalla, Jonathan Gómez-Raja, Monique Epstein, Robbert Sanderman, Sebastian Schulz, Achim Jerg, Ramzi Al-Horani, Taiysir Mansi, Mohamed Jmail, Fernando Barbosa, Fernando Ferreira-Santos, Boštjan Šimunič, Rado Pišot, Saša Pišot, Andrea Gaggioli, Piotr Zmijewski, Christian Apfelbacher, Jürgen Steinacker, Helmi Ben Saad, Jordan M. Glenn, Karim Chamari, Tarak Driss, Anita Hoekelmann and on behalf of the ECLB-COVID19 Consortiumadd Show full author list remove Hide full author list
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(17), 6237; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17176237 - 27 Aug 2020
Cited by 290 | Viewed by 24225
Abstract
Public health recommendations and governmental measures during the new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic have enforced numerous restrictions on daily living including social distancing, isolation, and home confinement. While these measures are imperative to mitigate spreading of COVID-19, the impact of these restrictions on [...] Read more.
Public health recommendations and governmental measures during the new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic have enforced numerous restrictions on daily living including social distancing, isolation, and home confinement. While these measures are imperative to mitigate spreading of COVID-19, the impact of these restrictions on psychosocial health is undefined. Therefore, an international online survey was launched in April 2020 to elucidate the behavioral and lifestyle consequences of COVID-19 restrictions. This report presents the preliminary results from more than one thousand responders on social participation and life satisfaction. Methods: Thirty-five research organizations from Europe, North-Africa, Western Asia, and the Americas promoted the survey through their networks to the general society, in 7 languages (English, German, French, Arabic, Spanish, Portuguese, and Slovenian). Questions were presented in a differential format with questions related to responses “before” and “during” confinement conditions. Results: 1047 participations (54% women) from Asia (36%), Africa (40%), Europe (21%), and others (3%) were included in the analysis. Findings revealed psychosocial strain during the enforced COVID-19 home confinement. Large decreases (p < 0.001) in the amount of social activity through family (−58%), friends/neighbors (−44.9%), or entertainment (−46.7%) were triggered by the enforced confinement. These negative effects on social participation were also associated with lower life satisfaction (−30.5%) during the confinement period. Conversely, the social contact score through digital technologies significantly increased (p < 0.001) during the confinement period with more individuals (+24.8%) being socially connected through digital technology. Conclusion: These preliminary findings elucidate the risk of psychosocial strain during the early COVID-19 home confinement period in 2020. Therefore, in order to mitigate the negative psychosocial effects of home confinement, implementation of national strategies focused on promoting social inclusion through a technology-based solution is strongly suggested. Full article
15 pages, 361 KiB  
Article
How Much Support Is There for the Recommendations Made to the General Population during Confinement? A Study during the First Three Days of the COVID–19 Quarantine in Spain
by Carlos Suso-Ribera and Ramón Martín-Brufau
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(12), 4382; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17124382 - 18 Jun 2020
Cited by 20 | Viewed by 3306
Abstract
Background: Recommendations on lifestyles during quarantine have been proposed by researchers and institutions since the COVID–19 crisis emerged. However, most of these have never been tested under real quarantine situations or derive from older investigations conducted mostly in China and Canada in the [...] Read more.
Background: Recommendations on lifestyles during quarantine have been proposed by researchers and institutions since the COVID–19 crisis emerged. However, most of these have never been tested under real quarantine situations or derive from older investigations conducted mostly in China and Canada in the face of infections other than COVID–19. The present study aimed at exploring the relationship between a comprehensive set of recommended lifestyles, socio–demographic, and personality variables and mood during the first stages of quarantine. Methods: A virtual snow–ball recollection technique was used to disseminate the survey across the general population in Spain starting the first day of mandatory quarantine (15 March 2020) until three days later (17 March). In total, 2683 Spanish adults (mean age = 34.86 years, SD = 13.74 years; 77.7% women) from the general population completed measures on socio–demographic, COVID–related, behavioral, personality/cognitive, and mood characteristics. Results: In the present study, depression and anger were higher than levels reported in a previous investigation before the COVID–19 crisis, while vigor, friendliness, and fatigue were lower. Anxiety levels were comparable. The expected direction of associations was confirmed for the majority of predictors. However, effect sizes were generally small and only a subset of them correlated to most outcomes. Intolerance of unpleasant emotions, neuroticism, and, to a lesser extent, agreeableness, sleep quality, young age, and time spent Internet surfing were the most robust and strongest correlates of mood states. Conclusions: Some recommended lifestyles (i.e., maintaining good quality of sleep and reducing Internet surfing) might be more important than others during the first days of quarantine. Promoting tolerance to unpleasant emotions (e.g., through online, self–managed programs) might also be of upmost importance. So far, recommendations have been made in general, but certain subgroups (e.g., certain personality profiles and young adults) might be especially vulnerable and should receive more attention. Full article
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