Special Issue "Mental Health in the Time of COVID-19"

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: 31 January 2021.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Andrea Fiorillo
Website
Guest Editor
Department of Psychiatry, University of Campania “L. Vanvitelli”, Naples, Italy
Interests: clinical psychiatry; epidemiology; social psychiatry; early intervention in mental health; promotion of mental health
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Prof. Dr. Maurizio Pompili
Website
Guest Editor
Suicide Prevention Centre, Department of Neurosciences, Mental Health and Sensory Organs, Sant'Andrea Hospital, Sapienza University of Rome, Rome, Italy
Interests: suicide and suicide prevention; public health; well-being; youth mental health
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleague,

The COVID-19 pandemic will most likely influence the mental health and well-being of the general population, leading to an impact on the organization and delivery of mental health services worldwide.

With regard to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on mental health, an increased prevalence of numerous mental disorders is expected, including anxiety, depressive, obsessive–compulsive, and post-traumatic stress disorder. Moreover, the incidence of other mental health problems, including substance and/or alcohol abuse, internet addiction, and psychosis, will probably increase. We also foresee, in the general population, an increased incidence of psychological difficulties related to quarantine, such as loneliness, economic difficulties, changes in daily habits, maladaptive coping strategies, and social disconnection. Finally, we also expect an increase in mental health problems in healthcare professionals, and these problems will include depression, anxiety, and burnout. All of this will mostly likely lead to into an increase in suicide and interpersonal violence. Mental health services are being called upon to promptly respond to what may indeed be another pandemic—that of mental health problems. In order to do so, the usual psychiatric practices will probably have to change, with more time dedicated to teleconsultation, phone calls with patients, and other at-distance interventions, while usual face-to-face contact will be restricted to urgent cases. For this Special Issue, we welcome original studies carried out on the worldwide impact of COVID-19 on mental health, the responses from mental health professionals, and the consequences at the psychological and social level. Moreover, studies exploring the effect of COVID-19 on human and animal brain models are also highly welcome. Finally, public health studies will be prioritized, in order to facilitate the implementation of real changes for ordinary clinical practice.

Prof. Dr. Andrea Fiorillo
Prof. Dr. Maurizio Pompili
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

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 semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2300 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • depression
  • anxiety
  • pandemic
  • post-traumatic stress disorder
  • stress
  • trauma

Published Papers (19 papers)

Order results
Result details
Select all
Export citation of selected articles as:

Research

Jump to: Review

Open AccessArticle
Impact on Mental Health Due to COVID-19 Pandemic: Cross-Sectional Study in Portugal and Brazil
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(18), 6794; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17186794 - 17 Sep 2020
Abstract
Mental health effects secondary to the COVID-19 pandemic were till recently considered less important or were neglected. Portugal and Brazil are facing the pandemic in quite different ways. This study aimed to describe the mental health status of the general adult population in [...] Read more.
Mental health effects secondary to the COVID-19 pandemic were till recently considered less important or were neglected. Portugal and Brazil are facing the pandemic in quite different ways. This study aimed to describe the mental health status of the general adult population in Portugal and Brazil during the COVID-19 pandemic and analyze the differences between the two countries. A cross-sectional quantitative study was based on an online questionnaire. Socio-demographic data were collected in addition to four validated scales: CAGE (acronym cut-annoyed-guilty-eye) Questionnaire, Satisfaction with Life Scale, Generalized Anxiety Disorder-7 and Patient Health Questionnaire-2. For each outcome, a multiple linear regression was performed. Five hundred and fifty people answered the questionnaire (435 women). The median age was 38 (Q1, Q3: 30, 47) years, 52.5% resided in Brazil and 47.5% in Portugal. The prevalence of anxiety was 71.3% (mild anxiety was present in 43.1%), the prevalence of depression was 24.7% and 23.8% of the sample had both depression and anxiety. Isolation was a significant factor for depression but not for anxiety. Well-being was below average. Mental illness was considerably higher than pre-COVID-19 levels. Portugal and Brazil will have to be prepared for future consequences of poor mental health and contribute immediate psychological support to their adult populations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health in the Time of COVID-19)
Open AccessArticle
Social Distancing Compliance under COVID-19 Pandemic and Mental Health Impacts: A Population-Based Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(18), 6692; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17186692 - 14 Sep 2020
Abstract
The success of public health measures for controlling the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic relies on population compliance. We analyzed compliance with social distancing and its associations with mental health. The Hong Kong COVID-19 Health Information Survey was conducted from 9–23 April 2020 [...] Read more.
The success of public health measures for controlling the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic relies on population compliance. We analyzed compliance with social distancing and its associations with mental health. The Hong Kong COVID-19 Health Information Survey was conducted from 9–23 April 2020 on 1501 adults randomly sampled for landline telephone interviews (n = 500) and online surveys (n = 1001). Compliance with social distancing and staying-at-home, stress (Perceived Stress Scale-4), anxiety (General Anxiety Disorders-2), and depressive symptoms (Patient Health Questionnaire-2) were collected. The associations between mental health symptoms and compliance were examined by multivariable regression models. Of the 1501 respondents (52.5% female, 72.3% aged 18–59 years), 74.2%, 72.7%, and 59.7% reported avoiding going out, going to crowded places, and attending social gatherings of more than four people, respectively. Most respondents had stayed-at-home for at least four of the past seven days (58.4%; mean 4.12, Standard Deviation 2.05). Adoption, perceived effectiveness, and perceived compliance with social distancing were associated with lower stress levels and less anxiety and depressive symptoms (all p < 0.01). However, more days stayed-at-home were associated with more depressive symptoms (adjusted Odds Ratio 1.09; 95%Confidence Interval 1.00, 1.18). The long-term psychological impact in relation to social distancing and staying-at-home requires further investigation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health in the Time of COVID-19)
Open AccessArticle
Mental Health in Frontline Medical Workers during the 2019 Novel Coronavirus Disease Epidemic in China: A Comparison with the General Population
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(18), 6550; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17186550 - 09 Sep 2020
Abstract
Background: Since December 2019, China has been affected by a severe outbreak of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Frontline medical workers experienced difficulty due to the high risk of being infected and long and distressing work shifts. The current study aims to evaluate psychological [...] Read more.
Background: Since December 2019, China has been affected by a severe outbreak of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Frontline medical workers experienced difficulty due to the high risk of being infected and long and distressing work shifts. The current study aims to evaluate psychological symptoms in frontline medical workers during the COVID-19 epidemic in China and to perform a comparison with the general population. Methods: An online survey was conducted from 14 February 2020 to 29 March 2020. A total of 899 frontline medical workers and 1104 respondents in the general population participated. Depression, anxiety, insomnia, and resilience were assessed via the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9), Generalized Anxiety Disorder Scale (GAD-7), Insomnia Severity Index (ISI), and abbreviated Connor–Davidson Resilience Scale (CD-RISC-10), respectively. Results: Overall, 30.43%, 20.29%, and 14.49% of frontline medical workers in Hubei Province and 23.13%, 13.14%, and 10.64% of frontline medical workers in other regions reported symptoms of depression, anxiety, and insomnia, respectively. In addition, 23.33%, 16.67%, and 6.67% of the general population in Hubei Province and 18.25%, 9.22%, and 7.17% of the general population in other regions reported symptoms of depression, anxiety, and insomnia, respectively. The resilience of frontline medical staff outside Hubei Province was higher than that of the general population outside Hubei Province. Conclusion: A large proportion of frontline medical workers and the general public experienced psychological symptoms during the COVID-19 outbreak. Psychological services for frontline medical workers and the general public are needed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health in the Time of COVID-19)
Open AccessArticle
Physical Activity, Health-Related Quality of Life, and Stress among the Chinese Adult Population during the COVID-19 Pandemic
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(18), 6494; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17186494 - 07 Sep 2020
Abstract
The COVID-19 pandemic poses a threat to global public health due to home confinement policies impacting on physical activity engagement and overall health. This study aimed to explore physical activity participation, health-related quality of life (HRQoL), and levels of perceived stress among Chinese [...] Read more.
The COVID-19 pandemic poses a threat to global public health due to home confinement policies impacting on physical activity engagement and overall health. This study aimed to explore physical activity participation, health-related quality of life (HRQoL), and levels of perceived stress among Chinese adults during the COVID-19 pandemic. An online survey was conducted between 25 February and 15 March 2020. A total of 645 surveys were completed. Participants reported increased sedentary time from pre-COVID-19 period to the COVID-19 pandemic period (p < 0.05). Over 80% of the sample engaged in either low or moderate intensity physical activity. Participants’ average physical component summary score (PCS) and mental component summary score (MCS) for HRQoL were 75.3 (SD = 16.6) and 66.6 (SD = 19.3), respectively. More than half of participants (53.0%) reported moderate levels of stress. Significant correlations between physical activity participation, HRQoL, and levels of perceived stress were observed (p < 0.05). Prolonged sitting time was also found to have a negative effect on HRQoL (p < 0.05). During such periods of home confinement, public health strategies aimed at educating Chinese adults to enhance home-based physical activity may be necessary to maintain health on a population level. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health in the Time of COVID-19)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Resilience Moderates Negative Outcome from Stress during the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Moderated-Mediation Approach
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(18), 6461; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17186461 - 04 Sep 2020
Abstract
Resilience refers to an individual’s healthy coping abilities when encountering adverse life events. The COVID-19 pandemic represents a situation with a high amount of stress exposure, which in turn may be associated with negative emotional outcome like depressive symptoms. The current study investigated [...] Read more.
Resilience refers to an individual’s healthy coping abilities when encountering adverse life events. The COVID-19 pandemic represents a situation with a high amount of stress exposure, which in turn may be associated with negative emotional outcome like depressive symptoms. The current study investigated if resilience moderated the effect of stress on symptoms of depression and if anxiety symptoms mediated this association. An adult sample of community controls completed the Perceived stress scale 14 (PSS-14), the Resilience scale for adults (RSA), the Patient health questionnaire 9 (PHQ-9) and the Generalized anxiety disorder 7 (GAD-7). Independent samples t-test, correlation analyses and moderated mediation analyses were conducted. The results showed that resilience moderated the relations between stress and anxiety symptoms (β = −0.131, p < 0.001) as well as between stress and depressive symptoms (β = −0.068, p < 0.05). In support of a moderated mediation model, resilience moderated the indirect effect of stress on depressive symptom, as confirmed by the index of moderated mediation (IMM = −0.036, p < 0.001; [95% BCa: −0.055, −0.020]). The high resilience subgroup was less affected than the low resilience subgroup by the effect of stress exposure symptoms of depression, mediated by anxiety. The study shows that stress exposure is associated with symptoms of depression, and anxiety mediates this association. Level of resilience differentiates the direct and indirect effect of stress on depression. Knowledge about the effect of stress in response to a pandemic is important for developing treatment and prevention strategies for stress, depression and health-related anxiety. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health in the Time of COVID-19)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Positive Impact of Mindfulness Meditation on Mental Health of Female Teachers during the COVID-19 Outbreak in Italy
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(18), 6450; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17186450 - 04 Sep 2020
Abstract
The Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent public health measures were shown to impact negatively on people’s mental health. In particular, women were reported to be at higher risk than men of developing symptoms of stress/anxiety/depression, and resilience was considered a key factor for positive [...] Read more.
The Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent public health measures were shown to impact negatively on people’s mental health. In particular, women were reported to be at higher risk than men of developing symptoms of stress/anxiety/depression, and resilience was considered a key factor for positive mental health outcomes. In the present study, a sample of Italian female teachers (n = 66, age: 51.5 ± 7.9 years) was assessed with self-report instruments one month before and one month after the start of the Covid-19 lockdown: mindfulness skills, empathy, personality profiles, interoceptive awareness, psychological well-being, emotional distress and burnout levels were measured. Meanwhile, they received an 8-week Mindfulness-Oriented Meditation (MOM) course, through two group meetings and six individual video-lessons. Based on baseline personality profiles, analyses of variance were performed in a low-resilience (LR, n = 32) and a high-resilience (HR, n = 26) group. The LR and HR groups differed at baseline in most of the self-report measures. Pre–post MOM significant improvements were found in both groups in anxiety, depression, affective empathy, emotional exhaustion, psychological well-being, interoceptive awareness, character traits and mindfulness levels. Improvements in depression and psychological well-being were higher in the LR vs. HR group. We conclude that mindfulness-based training can effectively mitigate the psychological negative consequences of the Covid-19 outbreak, helping in particular to restore well-being in the most vulnerable individuals. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health in the Time of COVID-19)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
COVID-19 Pandemic: Age-Related Differences in Measures of Stress, Anxiety and Depression in Canada
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(17), 6366; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17176366 - 01 Sep 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
Background: The spread of COVID-19 along with strict public health measures have resulted in unintended adverse effects, including greater levels of distress, anxiety, and depression. This study examined relative presentations of these psychopathologies in different age groups in a Canadian cohort during the [...] Read more.
Background: The spread of COVID-19 along with strict public health measures have resulted in unintended adverse effects, including greater levels of distress, anxiety, and depression. This study examined relative presentations of these psychopathologies in different age groups in a Canadian cohort during the COVID-19 pandemic. Methodology: Participants were subscribers to the Text4Hope program, developed to support Albertans during the COVID-19 pandemic. A survey link was used to gather demographic information and responses on several self-report scales, such as Perceived Stress Scale (PSS), Generalized Anxiety Disorder 7-item (GAD-7) scale, and Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9). Results: There were 8267 individuals who completed the survey, giving a response rate of 19.4%. Overall, 909 (11.0%) respondents identified as ≤25 years, 2939 (35.6%) identified as (26–40) years, 3431 (41.5%) identified as (41–60) years, 762 (9.2%) identified as over 60 years, and 226 (2.7%) did not identify their age. Mean scores on the PSS, GAD-7, and PHQ-9 scales were highest among those aged ≤25 and lowest amongst those aged >60 years old. Conclusions: The finding that the prevalence rates and the mean scores for stress, anxiety, and depression on standardized scales to decrease from younger to older subscribers is an interesting observation with potential implications for planning to meet mental health service needs during COVID-19. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health in the Time of COVID-19)
Open AccessArticle
Development and Implementation of Societal Influences Survey Questionnaire (SISQ) for Peoples during COVID-19 Pandemic: A Validity and Reliability Analysis
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(17), 6246; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17176246 - 27 Aug 2020
Abstract
The emergence of Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) had rapidly spread since FEB/MAR 2020. Policy to prevent transmission of COVDI-19 resulted in multi-dimensional impact on social interaction. We aimed to develop a beneficial survey tool with favorable quality and availability, the Societal Influences Survey [...] Read more.
The emergence of Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) had rapidly spread since FEB/MAR 2020. Policy to prevent transmission of COVDI-19 resulted in multi-dimensional impact on social interaction. We aimed to develop a beneficial survey tool with favorable quality and availability, the Societal Influences Survey Questionnaire (SISQ), to evaluate social influences on people during this pandemic. The SISQ was developed with 15 items and 4-point Likert scales consisting of five factors. These include social distance, social anxiety, social desirability, social information, and social adaptation. Construct validity and reliability were performed to verify the SISQ. A total of 1912 Taiwanese were recruited. The results demonstrated that the SISQ has acceptable reliability, with Cronbach’s alphas ranging between 0.57 and 0.76. The SISQ accounted for 58.86% and satisfied the requirement of Kaiser–Mayer–Olkinvalues (0.78) and significant Bartlett’s Test of sphericity. Moreover, the confirmatory factor analysis fit indices also indicated the adequacy of the model. As for multiple comparison, females scored higher than males in factor of social distance. Unemployed participants and those without partners scored higher in several domains of factors. The survey method and survey instrument prove reliable and valuable, also providing different categories of assessment results regarding social influences and their impacts. Further studies are warranted to extend the applicability of SISQ. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health in the Time of COVID-19)
Open AccessArticle
How Personality Relates to Distress in Parents during the Covid-19 Lockdown: The Mediating Role of Child’s Emotional and Behavioral Difficulties and the Moderating Effect of Living with Other People
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(17), 6236; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17176236 - 27 Aug 2020
Abstract
Since the initiation of the COVID-19 lockdown, Italian parents have been forced to manage their children at home. The present study aimed at investigating the psychological distress of parents during the lockdown, identifying contributing factors. An online survey was administered to 833 participants [...] Read more.
Since the initiation of the COVID-19 lockdown, Italian parents have been forced to manage their children at home. The present study aimed at investigating the psychological distress of parents during the lockdown, identifying contributing factors. An online survey was administered to 833 participants from 3 to 15 April 2020. Mediation and moderated mediation models were run to explore the association between parent neuroticism and parent distress, mediated by child hyperactivity–inattention and child emotional symptoms, and the moderating effect of living only with child(ren) on the direct and indirect effects of parent neuroticism on parent distress. For parents living only with child(ren), high levels of psychological distress depended exclusively on their levels of neuroticism. For parents living with at least one other person in addition to child(ren), distress levels were also mediated by child behavioral and emotional difficulties. Motherhood emerged as a significant factor contributing to greater distress. Furthermore, parent psychological distress decreased in line with increased child age. The results confirm that neuroticism is an important risk factor for mental health. Preventive measures should be primarily target multicomponent families with younger children and directed towards parents who are already known to present emotional instability and to parents of children who have received local mental health assistance for behavioral and/or emotional difficulties. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health in the Time of COVID-19)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Predicting Psychological Distress Amid the COVID-19 Pandemic by Machine Learning: Discrimination and Coping Mechanisms of Korean Immigrants in the U.S.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(17), 6057; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17176057 - 20 Aug 2020
Abstract
The current study examined the predictive ability of discrimination-related variables, coping mechanisms, and sociodemographic factors on the psychological distress level of Korean immigrants in the U.S. amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Korean immigrants (both foreign-born and U.S.-born) in the U.S. above the age of [...] Read more.
The current study examined the predictive ability of discrimination-related variables, coping mechanisms, and sociodemographic factors on the psychological distress level of Korean immigrants in the U.S. amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Korean immigrants (both foreign-born and U.S.-born) in the U.S. above the age of 18 were invited to participate in an online survey through purposive sampling. In order to verify the variables predicting the level of psychological distress on the final sample from 42 states (n = 790), the Artificial Neural Network (ANN) analysis, which is able to examine complex non-linear interactions among variables, was conducted. The most critical predicting variables in the neural network were a person’s resilience, experiences of everyday discrimination, and perception that racial discrimination toward Asians has increased in the U.S. since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health in the Time of COVID-19)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Risk Perception and Depression in Public Health Crises: Evidence from the COVID-19 Crisis in China
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(16), 5728; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17165728 - 07 Aug 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
Background: Scant attention has been paid to how risk perceptions of public health crises may affect people’s mental health. Aims: The aims of this study are to (1) construct a conceptual framework for risk perception and depression of people in public health [...] Read more.
Background: Scant attention has been paid to how risk perceptions of public health crises may affect people’s mental health. Aims: The aims of this study are to (1) construct a conceptual framework for risk perception and depression of people in public health crises, (2) examine how the mental health of people in the crisis of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) is affected by risk perception and its associated factors, including distance perception of the crisis and support of prevention and control policies, and (3) propose policy recommendations on how to deal with psychological problems in the current COVID-19 crisis. Methods: Online questionnaire survey was implemented. A total of 6373 people visited the questionnaire online, 1115 people completed the questionnaire, and the number of valid questionnaires was 1081. Structural equation modeling was employed for data analysis. Results: Risk perception and its associated factors significantly affect the mental health of people in public health crises. Specifically, (1) distance perception of public health crises is negatively associated with depression among people, (2) affective risk perception is positively associated with depression of people in public health crises, (3) cognitive risk perception is negatively associated with depression of people in public health crises, and (4) support of prevention and control policies is negatively associated with depression of people in public health crises. Conclusion: The findings of this study suggest that risk perception plays an important role in affecting the mental health of people in a public health crisis. Therefore, health policies aiming to improve the psychological wellbeing of the people in a public health crisis should take risk perception into consideration. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health in the Time of COVID-19)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Design and Validation of the Adaptation to Change Questionnaire: New Realities in Times of COVID-19
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(15), 5612; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17155612 - 04 Aug 2020
Abstract
Emotional and cognitive-behavioral factors influence people’s adaptability to change. Based on this premise, the objective of this study was to develop, evaluate and validate the Adaptation to Change Questionnaire (ADAPTA-10) for identifying those who show poor adaptability to adverse situations, such as those [...] Read more.
Emotional and cognitive-behavioral factors influence people’s adaptability to change. Based on this premise, the objective of this study was to develop, evaluate and validate the Adaptation to Change Questionnaire (ADAPTA-10) for identifying those who show poor adaptability to adverse situations, such as those caused by COVID-19. This study was carried out in a sample of 1160 adults and produced a 10-item instrument with good reliability and validity indices. It is an effective tool useful in research and in clinical practice. Calculation tables are provided for the general Spanish population and by sex to evaluate adaptability to change. The two-dimensional structure proposed in the original model was confirmed. This instrument will enable the needs for adaptation to the new reality associated with COVID-19 to be detected and also other situations in which the subject becomes immersed which demand adaptation strategies in the new situation lived in. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health in the Time of COVID-19)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Self-Control Moderates the Association Between Perceived Severity of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) and Mental Health Problems Among the Chinese Public
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(13), 4820; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17134820 - 04 Jul 2020
Cited by 3
Abstract
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has caused thousands of deaths in China. Prior research suggests that individuals’ perceived severity of COVID-19 is related to a range of negative emotional and behavioral reactions among the Chinese public. However, scant research has examined the underlying mechanisms. [...] Read more.
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has caused thousands of deaths in China. Prior research suggests that individuals’ perceived severity of COVID-19 is related to a range of negative emotional and behavioral reactions among the Chinese public. However, scant research has examined the underlying mechanisms. Drawing upon the risk-resilience model, this study proposes that self-control, as a resilient factor, would potentially moderate the association between perceived severity of COVID-19 and mental health problems. Data from a national survey was used to examine this idea. Participants were 4607 citizens from 31 regions in China (Mage = 23.71 years, 72.5% female) who completed a national survey at the beginning of February 2020. Results of hierarchical regression showed that after controlling for a number of demographic variables, perceived severity of COVID-19 and self-control were positively and negatively related to mental health problems, respectively. More importantly, self-control moderated the “perceived severity of COVID-19–mental health problems” association, with this link attenuating as the levels of self-control increased. These findings suggest that compared to those with high self-control, individuals with low self-control are more vulnerable and are more in need of psychological aids to maintain mental health in the encounter of the COVID-19 outbreak. Practically, enhancing individuals’ self-control ability might be a promising way to improve individuals’ mental health during the early period of the COVID-19 outbreak. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health in the Time of COVID-19)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Provision of Psychotherapy during the COVID-19 Pandemic among Czech, German and Slovak Psychotherapists
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(13), 4811; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17134811 - 04 Jul 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
Psychotherapists around the world are facing an unprecedented situation with the outbreak of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19). To combat the rapid spread of the virus, direct contact with others has to be avoided when possible. Therefore, remote psychotherapy provides a valuable option [...] Read more.
Psychotherapists around the world are facing an unprecedented situation with the outbreak of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19). To combat the rapid spread of the virus, direct contact with others has to be avoided when possible. Therefore, remote psychotherapy provides a valuable option to continue mental health care during the COVID-19 pandemic. The present study investigated the fear of psychotherapists to become infected with COVID-19 during psychotherapy in personal contact and assessed how the provision of psychotherapy changed due to the COVID-19 situation and whether there were differences with regard to country and gender. Psychotherapists from three European countries: Czech Republic (CZ, n = 112), Germany (DE, n = 130) and Slovakia (SK, n = 96), with on average 77.8% female participants, completed an online survey. Participants rated the fear of COVID-19 infection during face-to-face psychotherapy and reported the number of patients treated on average per week (in personal contact, via telephone, via internet) during the COVID-19 situation as well as (retrospectively) in the months before. Fear of COVID-19 infection was highest in SK and lowest in DE (p < 0.001) and was higher in female compared to male psychotherapists (p = 0.021). In all countries, the number of patients treated on average per week in personal contact decreased (p < 0.001) and remote psychotherapies increased (p < 0.001), with more patients being treated via internet than via telephone during the COVID-19 situation (p < 0.001). Furthermore, female psychotherapists treated less patients in personal contact (p = 0.036), while they treated more patients via telephone than their male colleagues (p = 0.015). Overall, the total number of patients treated did not differ during COVID-19 from the months before (p = 0.133) and psychotherapy in personal contact remained the most common treatment modality. Results imply that the supply of mental health care could be maintained during COVID-19 and that changes in the provision of psychotherapy vary among countries and gender. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health in the Time of COVID-19)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Internalized Stigmatization, Social Support, and Individual Mental Health Problems in the Public Health Crisis
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(12), 4507; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17124507 - 23 Jun 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
This study investigates the relationship between internalized stigmatization brought on by epicenter travel experiences and mental health problems (including anxiety, depression, and shame) during the period of the novel coronavirus disease emergency in China. The cross-sectional data were collected using the time-lag design [...] Read more.
This study investigates the relationship between internalized stigmatization brought on by epicenter travel experiences and mental health problems (including anxiety, depression, and shame) during the period of the novel coronavirus disease emergency in China. The cross-sectional data were collected using the time-lag design to avoid the common method bias as much as possible. Regression results using structural equation modeling show that the internalized stigmatization of epicenter travel experiences may have positive relationships with mental health problems (i.e., anxiety, depression, and shame), and such relationships can be moderated by social support. Specifically, the positive relationships between internalized stigmatization and mental health problems are buffered/strengthened when social support is at a high/low level. The findings of this study suggest that, in this epidemic, people who have epicenter travel experience could be affected by internalized stigmatization, no matter whether they have ever got infected. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health in the Time of COVID-19)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
COVID-19-Related Factors Associated with Sleep Disturbance and Suicidal Thoughts among the Taiwanese Public: A Facebook Survey
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(12), 4479; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17124479 - 22 Jun 2020
Cited by 3
Abstract
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has impacted many aspects of people’s lives all over the world. This Facebook survey study aimed to investigate the COVID-19-related factors that were associated with sleep disturbance and suicidal thoughts among members of the public during the COVID-19 [...] Read more.
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has impacted many aspects of people’s lives all over the world. This Facebook survey study aimed to investigate the COVID-19-related factors that were associated with sleep disturbance and suicidal thoughts among members of the public during the COVID-19 pandemic in Taiwan. The online survey recruited 1970 participants through a Facebook advertisement. Their self-reported experience of sleep disturbance and suicidal thoughts in the previous week were collected along with a number of COVID-19-related factors, including level of worry, change in social interaction and daily lives, any academic/occupational interference, levels of social and specific support, and self-reported physical health. In total, 55.8% of the participants reported sleep disturbance, and 10.8% reported having suicidal thoughts in the previous week. Multiple COVID-19-related factors were associated with sleep disturbance and suicidal thoughts in the COVID-19 pandemic. Increased worry about COVID-19, more severe impact of COVID-19 on social interaction, lower perceived social support, more severe academic/occupational interference due to COVID-19, lower COVID-19-specified support, and poorer self-reported physical health were significantly associated with sleep disturbance. Less handwashing, lower perceived social support, lower COVID-19-specified support, poorer self-reported physical health, and younger age were significantly associated with suicidal thoughts. Further investigation is needed to understand the changes in mental health among the public since the mitigation of the COVID-19 pandemic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health in the Time of COVID-19)
Open AccessArticle
Related Health Factors of Psychological Distress During the COVID-19 Pandemic in Spain
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(11), 3947; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17113947 - 02 Jun 2020
Cited by 10
Abstract
Measures to prevent and contain the COVID-19 health crisis include population confinement, with the consequent isolation and interruption of their usual activities. The aim of the study is to analyse psychological distress during the COVID-19 pandemic. For this, a cross-sectional observational study with [...] Read more.
Measures to prevent and contain the COVID-19 health crisis include population confinement, with the consequent isolation and interruption of their usual activities. The aim of the study is to analyse psychological distress during the COVID-19 pandemic. For this, a cross-sectional observational study with a sample of 4180 people over the age of 18 during quarantine was developed. Variables considered were sociodemographic variables, physical symptoms, health conditions, COVID-19 contact history and psychological adjustment. The data were collected through a self-developed questionnaire and the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-12). Bivariate analyses were performed, including Chi-Squared test and Student’s T-test. Predictive ability was calculated through logistic regression. Results obtained showed a high level of psychological distress (72.0%), with a higher percentage in women and people of lower middle age. Statistically significant differences were found in the variable working situation (χ² = 63.139, p 0.001, V = 0.123) and living with children under the age of 16 (χ² = 7.393, p = 0.007, V = 0.042). The predictive variables with the highest weight were sex (OR = 1.952, 95% IC = (1.667, 2.286)), presence of symptoms (OR = 1.130, 95% CI = (1.074, 1.190)), and having had close contact with an individual with confirmed COVID-19 (OR = 1.241, 95% CI = (1.026, 1.500)). These results could enrich prevention interventions in public health and, in particular, in mental health in similar pandemic situations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health in the Time of COVID-19)
Open AccessArticle
Depression and Anxiety in Hong Kong during COVID-19
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(10), 3740; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17103740 - 25 May 2020
Cited by 15
Abstract
It has been three months since the first confirmed case of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in Hong Kong, and people now have a more complete picture of the extent of the pandemic. Therefore, it is time to evaluate the impacts of COVID-19 on [...] Read more.
It has been three months since the first confirmed case of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in Hong Kong, and people now have a more complete picture of the extent of the pandemic. Therefore, it is time to evaluate the impacts of COVID-19 on mental health. The current population-based study aimed to evaluate the depression and anxiety of people in Hong Kong during the COVID-19 pandemic. Respondents were randomly recruited and asked to complete a structured questionnaire, including the patient health questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9), the generalized anxiety disorder-7 (GAD-7), the global rating of change scale and items related to COVID-19. Of the 500 respondents included in the study, 19% had depression (PHQ-9 score ≥ 10) and 14% had anxiety (GAD score ≥ 10). In addition, 25.4% reported that their mental health had deteriorated since the pandemic. Multiple logistic regression analysis found that not experiencing the SARS outbreak in 2003, being worried about being infected by COVID-19, being bothered by having not enough surgical masks and being bothered by not being able to work from home were associated with a poorer mental health status. Psychological support, such as brief, home-based psychological interventions, should be provided to citizens during the pandemic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health in the Time of COVID-19)

Review

Jump to: Research

Open AccessReview
Prevalence of Anxiety in Medical Students during the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Rapid Systematic Review with Meta-Analysis
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(18), 6603; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17186603 - 10 Sep 2020
Abstract
The novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has brought a great deal of pressure for medical students, who typically show elevated anxiety rates. Our aim is to investigate the prevalence of anxiety in medical students during this pandemic. This systematic review and mini meta-analysis [...] Read more.
The novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has brought a great deal of pressure for medical students, who typically show elevated anxiety rates. Our aim is to investigate the prevalence of anxiety in medical students during this pandemic. This systematic review and mini meta-analysis has been conducted following the PRISMA guidelines. Two researchers independently searched PubMed on 26 August 2020 for cross-sectional studies on medical students during the COVID-19 outbreak, with no language restrictions applied. We then performed a manual search to detect other potentially eligible investigations. To the 1361 records retrieved in the initial search, 4 more were added by manual search on medRxiv. Finally, eight studies were finally included for qualitative and quantitative analysis, which yielded an estimated prevalence of anxiety of 28% (95% CI: 22–34%), with significant heterogeneity between studies. The prevalence of anxiety in medical students is similar to that prior to the pandemic but correlates with several specific COVID-related stressors. While some preventive and risk factors have been previously identified in a non-pandemic context, knowledge and cognitions on COVID-19 transmission, treatment, prognosis and prevention negatively correlate with anxiety, emerging as a key preventive factor that may provide a rationale for why the levels of anxiety have remained stable in medical students during the pandemic while increasing in their non-medical peers and the general population. Other reasons for the invariability of anxiety rates in this population are discussed. A major limitation of our review is that Chinese students comprised 89% the total sample, which could compromise the external validity of our work Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health in the Time of COVID-19)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

Title: Depression and Anxiety in Hong Kong during COVID-19
Authors: Edmond Pui Hang Choi; Bryant Pui Hung Hui; Eric Yuk Fai Wan
Affiliation: the University of Hong Kong
Abstract: It has been three months since the first confirmed case of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in Hong Kong, and people now have a more complete picture of the extent of the pandemic. Therefore, it is time to evaluate the impacts of COVID-19 on mental health. The current population-based study aimed to evaluate the depression and anxiety of people in Hong Kong during the COVID-19 pandemic. Respondents were randomly recruited and asked to complete a structured questionnaire, including the patient health questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9), the generalized anxiety disorder-7 (GAD-7), the global rating of change scale and items related to COVID-19. Of the 500 respondents included in the study, 19% had depression (PHQ-9 score ≥10) and 14% had anxiety (GAD score ≥10). In addition, 25.4% reported that their mental health had deteriorated since the pandemic. Multiple logistic regression analysis found that not experiencing the SARS outbreak in 2003, being worried about being infected by COVID-19, being bothered by having not enough surgical masks and being bothered by not being able to work from home led to a poorer mental health status. Psychological support, such as brief, home-based psychological interventions, should be provided to citizens during the pandemic.

Back to TopTop