Drastic reductions in mental well-being observed globally during the COVID-19 pandemic : results from the ASAP survey

  • Most countries affected by the COVID-19 pandemic have repeatedly restricted public life to control the contagion. However, the health impact of confinement measures is hitherto unclear. We performed a multinational survey investigating changes in mental and physical well-being (MWB/PWB) during the first wave of the pandemic. A total of 14,975 individuals from 14 countries provided valid responses. Compared to pre-restrictions, MWB, as measured by the WHO-5 questionnaire, decreased considerably during restrictions (68.1 ± 16.9 to 51.9 ± 21.0 points). Whereas 14.2% of the participants met the cutoff for depression screening pre-restrictions, this share tripled to 45.2% during restrictions. Factors associated with clinically relevant decreases in MWB were female sex (odds ratio/OR = 1.20, 95% CI: 1.11–1.29), high physical activity levels pre-restrictions (OR = 1.29, 95% CI 1.16–1.42), decreased vigorous physical activity during restrictions (OR = 1.14, 95% CI: 1.05–1.23), and working (partially) outside the home vs. working remotely (OR = 1.29, 95% CI: 1.16–1.44/OR = 1.35, 95% CI: 1.23–1.47). Reductions, although smaller, were also seen for PWB. Scores in the SF-36 bodily pain subscale decreased from 85.8 ± 18.7% pre-restrictions to 81.3 ± 21.9% during restrictions. Clinically relevant decrements of PWB were associated with female sex (OR = 1.62, 95% CI: 1.50–1.75), high levels of public life restrictions (OR = 1.26, 95% CI: 1.18–1.36), and young age (OR = 1.10, 95% CI: 1.03–1.19). Study findings suggest lockdowns instituted during the COVID-19 pandemic may have had substantial adverse public health effects. The development of interventions mitigating losses in MWB and PWB is, thus, paramount when preparing for forthcoming waves of COVID-19 or future public life restrictions.
Author:Jan WilkeORCiDGND, Karsten Hollander, Lisa Mohr, Pascal Edouard, Chiara Fossati, Marcela González-Gross, Celso Sánchez Ramírez, Fernando Laiño, Benedict Tan, Julian David Pillay, Fabio Pigozzi, David Jimenez-Pavon, Matteo C. Sattler, Johannes Jaunig, Mandy Zhang, Mireille van Poppel, Christoph Heidt, Steffen Willwacher, Lutz VogtGND, Evert Verhagen, Luiz Hespanhol, Adam S. Tenforde
Parent Title (English):Frontiers in medicine
Publisher:Frontiers Media
Place of publication:Lausanne
Document Type:Article
Date of Publication (online):2021/03/26
Date of first Publication:2021/03/26
Publishing Institution:Universitätsbibliothek Johann Christian Senckenberg
Release Date:2021/06/09
Tag:SF-36; WHO-5; coronavirus; lockdowns; pain; psychological health
Issue:art. 578959
Page Number:6
First Page:1
Last Page:6
Institutes:Psychologie und Sportwissenschaften
Dewey Decimal Classification:1 Philosophie und Psychologie / 15 Psychologie / 150 Psychologie
6 Technik, Medizin, angewandte Wissenschaften / 61 Medizin und Gesundheit / 610 Medizin und Gesundheit
Open-Access-Publikationsfonds:Psychologie und Sportwissenschaften
Licence (German):License LogoCreative Commons - Namensnennung 4.0