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Mental Health Roadmap: Where We Stand and Where to Go?

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 34627

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Institute of Psychology, University of Opole, Opole, Poland
Interests: clinical psychology; general psychology; individual differences; measurement in psychology (development, reliability and validity of questionnaires); personality; psychology of behavioral addiction
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Pharmacy College, King Saud University, Riyadh 11362, Saudi Arabia
Interests: general psychology; individual differences; personality; synesthesia; clinical psychology; psychology of addiction; psychology of health; psychology of sport and physical activity
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Guest Editor
Faculty of Medicine, University of Technology, 43 Rolna Street, 40-555 Katowice, Poland
Interests: mental health in COVID-19; problematic use of Internet; young adults; singlehood;work psychology
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

At a global level, mental health is one of the most challenging aspects of health areas. When the COVID-19 pandemic struck, it opened our eyes to further challenges and boundaries faced mental health system. There is an urgent need to have a complete screening of the current status and conduct a comprehensive understanding of mechanisms and risk factors associated with mental illness and mental well-being. The aims of this special issue are: Comprehensive analysis of the prevalence and predictors of psychological issues including but not limited to anxiety, depression, insomnia, eating disorders, gaming and smartphone addiction, and work burnout.Discusses the status of preexisting mental condition, stress or coping strategies in healthy individuals, people with various diseases, or health care professionals.Review and highlight an issue facing the mental health system from an institutional perspective, like medical schools, hospitals, and palliative care housing.Policy-making and recommendations to drive sustainable recovery and overall promote global mental health. The central goal of this issue is to generate recent collections that would help update the current status, tackle mental health issues, re-shaping the existing services, and provide effective preventive measures. Participants are encouraged from social sciences (psychology, sociology, pedagogy) and medical sciences. All submissions in line with our central goal are welcome, including original cross-sectional and longitudinal studies, systematic reviews and meta-analysis studies. The output of this topic would profoundly affect the status of a preexisting mental condition in healthy individual, clinical samples, and health care professionals.

Prof. Dr. Aleksandra Rogowska
Dr. Tahani K. Alshammari
Dr. Dominika Ochnik
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.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2500 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

  • mental health
  • policy-making
  • coping strategies
  • anxiety
  • depression
  • insomnia
  • gaming
  • smartphone addiction
  • eating disorders

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Published Papers (12 papers)

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Research

11 pages, 340 KiB  
Article
HSPS-10—Short Version of the Highly Sensitive Person Scale for Students Aged 12–25 Years
by Monika Baryła-Matejczuk, Robert Porzak and Wiesław Poleszak
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(23), 15775; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph192315775 - 27 Nov 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2601
Abstract
The aim of the article is to present a short version of the Highly Sensitive Person Scale (HSPS-10) as a useful tool for the assessment of adolescents and young adults and to improve their self-awareness. (1) Background: The original American HSPS was developed [...] Read more.
The aim of the article is to present a short version of the Highly Sensitive Person Scale (HSPS-10) as a useful tool for the assessment of adolescents and young adults and to improve their self-awareness. (1) Background: The original American HSPS was developed as a tool for the assessment of Sensory Processing Sensitivity (SPS), which is understood to be an inherited temperamental trait. The basis for the research is the concept of SPS, which may be included within the broader construct of the Environmental Sensitivity (ES) model. (2) Methods: The research used a Polish-language, short version developed on the basis of the Highly Sensitive Person Scale, where the respondents answered 10 questions in a 7-point Likert scale. (3) Results: The test results show that the Polish, HSPS-10 is a reliable and valid measurement of the SPS construct and that the results obtained using the abbreviated version indicate a three-factor structure. The structure and psychometric properties of the tool are consistent across different age groups. (4) Conclusions: HSPS-10 is a simple and quick tool for group screenings as well as the individual assessment of school students and adults aged 12–25. The developed standardized procedure allows for the early recognition and identification of changes in the SPS over the course of life. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health Roadmap: Where We Stand and Where to Go?)
12 pages, 336 KiB  
Article
Selected Texan K-12 Educators’ Perceptions of Youth Suicide Prevention Training
by Melanie McKoin Owens, Alexis Zickafoose, Gary Wingenbach, Sana Haddad, Jamie Freeny and Josephine Engels
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(19), 12625; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph191912625 - 3 Oct 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1736
Abstract
K-12 school personnel may be frontline responders for youth contemplating suicide or other harmful behaviors. Therefore, the purpose of this preliminary study was to determine selected K-12 educators’ perceptions of youth suicide prevention (YSP) training. A longitudinal trend survey with repeated measures and [...] Read more.
K-12 school personnel may be frontline responders for youth contemplating suicide or other harmful behaviors. Therefore, the purpose of this preliminary study was to determine selected K-12 educators’ perceptions of youth suicide prevention (YSP) training. A longitudinal trend survey with repeated measures and proportionally stratified random samples of K-12 personnel from nine Texas independent school districts provided data. Participants’ perceived knowledge of the YSP content showed significant appreciative gains between pre- and follow-up post-tests. Likewise, their confidence levels for helping students at risk of suicide and approaching other adults to talk about students at risk of suicide rose significantly between pretests and follow-up post-tests. This preliminary study reinforces the value of training educators to acquire content knowledge and confidence boosting opportunities for engagement in difficult dialogue about suicidality. YSP training helped improve educators’ confidence to engage with others about students’ mental health concerns, calling attention to the importance of identifying early warning signs that may aid in early support and prevention of youth mental health concerns. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health Roadmap: Where We Stand and Where to Go?)
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15 pages, 385 KiB  
Article
University Students’ Mental Health and Well-Being during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Findings from the UniCoVac Qualitative Study
by Mayuri Gogoi, Adam Webb, Manish Pareek, Christopher D. Bayliss and Lieve Gies
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(15), 9322; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19159322 - 30 Jul 2022
Cited by 24 | Viewed by 6232
Abstract
The worldwide spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic in early 2020 affected all major sectors, including higher education. The measures to contain the spread of this deadly disease led to the closure of colleges and universities across the globe, disrupting the [...] Read more.
The worldwide spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic in early 2020 affected all major sectors, including higher education. The measures to contain the spread of this deadly disease led to the closure of colleges and universities across the globe, disrupting the lives of millions of students and subjecting them to a new world of online learning. These sudden disturbances coupled with the demands of a new learning system and the experiences of living through a pandemic have placed additional strains on the mental health of university students. Research on university students’ mental health, conducted during the pandemic, have found high levels of stress, anxiety and depression among students. In this qualitative study, we aimed to understand how pandemic experiences have affected student well-being by conducting in-depth interviews with 34 undergraduate students enrolled in a UK university. All interviews were conducted through Microsoft Teams and recorded with prior permission. Transcripts of recorded interviews were thematically analysed which identified two broad themes: (i) University students’ mental health and well-being experiences during the pandemic; (ii) factors that influenced students’ mental health and well-being. These factors were further distributed across six sub-themes: (a) isolation; (b) health and well-being; (c) bereavement; (d) academic concerns; (e) financial worries and; (f) support, coping, and resilience. Our study identifies the importance of mental health support to university students during pandemics and calls for measures to improve access to support services through these crisis points by universities. Findings can also inform students’ mental health and risk assessments in the aftermath of the pandemic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health Roadmap: Where We Stand and Where to Go?)
18 pages, 2844 KiB  
Article
Challenges and Opportunities for Mental Health and Psychosocial Support in the COVID-19 Response in Africa: A Mixed-Methods Study
by Alice Walker, Muhammad Abdullatif Alkasaby, Florence Baingana, William K. Bosu, Mohammed Abdulaziz, Rosie Westerveld, Adelard Kakunze, Rosemary Mwaisaka, Khalid Saeed, Namoudou Keita, Ian F. Walker and Julian Eaton
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(15), 9313; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19159313 - 29 Jul 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 3495
Abstract
This research aimed to (1) assess the extent to which mental health and psycho-social support (MHPSS) was included in the national response to the COVID-19 pandemic in African countries, and (2) explore barriers and enablers to MHPSS integration into the COVID-19 response. A [...] Read more.
This research aimed to (1) assess the extent to which mental health and psycho-social support (MHPSS) was included in the national response to the COVID-19 pandemic in African countries, and (2) explore barriers and enablers to MHPSS integration into the COVID-19 response. A mixed-methods study, using an online survey and in-depth interviews, was conducted. Participants included Mental Health Focal Points at the Ministries of Health, the World Health Organization (WHO) country and regional offices, and civil society representatives. Responses were received from 28 countries out of 55 contacted. The implementation level, based on standard guidelines, of MHPSS activities was below 50% in most countries. The most implemented MHPSS activities were establishing coordination groups (57%) and developing MHPSS strategy (45%), while the least implemented activities included implementing the developed MHPSS strategy (32%) and establishing monitoring and evaluation mechanisms (21%). Key factors that hindered implementing MHPSS activities included lack of political commitment and low prioritisation of mental health during emergencies, as it was seen as a “less important” issue during the COVID-19 pandemic, when more importance was given to infection prevention and control (IPC). However, there are signs of optimism, as mental health gained some attention during COVID-19. It is imperative to build on the attention gained by integrating MHPSS in emergency preparedness and response and strengthening mental health systems in the longer term. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health Roadmap: Where We Stand and Where to Go?)
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19 pages, 384 KiB  
Article
Active Ageing Awareness and Quality of Life among Pre-Elder Malaysian Public Employees
by Nor Hana Ahmad Bahuri, Hussein Rizal, Mas Ayu Said, Phyo Kyaw Myint and Tin Tin Su
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(15), 9034; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19159034 - 25 Jul 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1643
Abstract
Increasing life expectancy has led to a global rise in late-life diseases. Quality of Life (QOL) is important for healthy life expectancy. The active ageing framework serves as a guide for policymakers to design policies that enhance the QOL of older people. This [...] Read more.
Increasing life expectancy has led to a global rise in late-life diseases. Quality of Life (QOL) is important for healthy life expectancy. The active ageing framework serves as a guide for policymakers to design policies that enhance the QOL of older people. This study aims to determine the association between awareness of active ageing and QOL. The Malay version of the 26-item WHOQOL-BREF questionnaire was utilised along with the 14-item Active Ageing Awareness Questionnaire (AAAQ). A total of 532 participants had a mean (SD) age of 50.2 (5.9), were largely ethnic Malay (96.2%), female (52.8%), and comprised largely of low-income households (65.4%). The median (IQR) AAAQ score was 71.4 (19.1). The hierarchical multiple regression analysis revealed significant positive association between AAAQ and the QOL domains of physical (β = 0.154, p < 0.001), psychological (β = 0.196, p < 0.001), social relationship (β = 0.175, p < 0.001), and environment (β = 0.145, p < 0.001) after adjusting for all covariates. Awareness of active ageing was found to have a positive effect on all domains of QOL among pre-elder employees, and thus, we recommend that policies to improve active ageing awareness should be implemented for healthy life expectancy in ageing populations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health Roadmap: Where We Stand and Where to Go?)
12 pages, 1570 KiB  
Article
Is There a Direct Link between Sexual Satisfaction and Restrictions during the Second Wave of the COVID-19 Pandemic?
by Aleksandra M. Rogowska, Natalia Wójcik, Aleksandra Janik and Paulina Klimala
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(13), 7769; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19137769 - 24 Jun 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1511
Abstract
Background: Research suggested that the COVID-19 pandemic-related restrictions decreased sexual function and satisfaction. The present study examines the direct relationship between sexual satisfaction and restrictions during the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. Methods: A cross-sectional study was performed in Poland [...] Read more.
Background: Research suggested that the COVID-19 pandemic-related restrictions decreased sexual function and satisfaction. The present study examines the direct relationship between sexual satisfaction and restrictions during the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. Methods: A cross-sectional study was performed in Poland between 3 September 2020 and 18 January 2021. A convenience sample of 1364 adults, aged 18–67 (M = 25.13, SD = 6.45), among whom 62.39% were women, and 23.17% were single, completed anonymous web-based survey. The Sexual Satisfaction Questionnaire (SSQ) and Stringency Index (IS) were used to assess sexual satisfaction and the level of restrictions during the pandemic, respectively. Results: No direct association was found between sexual satisfaction and the level of restrictions during the lockdown. Sexual satisfaction was significantly worse among single participants than those living in a couple. No gender differences were found in sexual satisfaction. Conclusions: Future studies should examine an indirect association between sexual satisfaction and restrictions during the pandemic via stress and anxiety. Single relationship status should be considered a risk factor for sexual satisfaction, so single individuals should be a target group for prevention programs during the pandemic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health Roadmap: Where We Stand and Where to Go?)
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15 pages, 1418 KiB  
Article
Longitudinal Predictors of Coronavirus-Related PTSD among Young Adults from Poland, Germany, Slovenia, and Israel
by Dominika Ochnik, Aleksandra M. Rogowska, Ana Arzenšek and Joy Benatov
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(12), 7207; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19127207 - 12 Jun 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1946
Abstract
The aim of this study was to reveal longitudinal predictors of coronavirus-related PTSD and the moderating roles of country, sex, age, and student status among young adults from Poland, Germany, Slovenia, and Israel. We included the following predictors: perceived stress, exposure to COVID-19, [...] Read more.
The aim of this study was to reveal longitudinal predictors of coronavirus-related PTSD and the moderating roles of country, sex, age, and student status among young adults from Poland, Germany, Slovenia, and Israel. We included the following predictors: perceived stress, exposure to COVID-19, perceived impact of COVID-19 on well-being in socioeconomic status (PNIC-SES) and social relationships (PNIC-SR), fear of COVID-19, fear of vaccination, and trust in institutions. We conducted the study online among a representative sample of 1723 young adults aged 20–40 (M = 30.74, SD = 5.74) years in February 2021 (T1) and May–June 2021 (T2). We used McNemar’s χ2 and the paired samples Student’s t-test to test differences over time. We assessed the relationships between variables using Pearson’s correlation. We performed structural equation modeling (SEM) to examine the associations between variables at T1 and T2. We used a lagged regression model to examine the causal influences between variables across different time points (T1 and T2). The results showed that all variables decreased over time, except exposure to COVID-19. The rates of infected, tested, and under-quarantine participants increased. The rates of those who lost a job and experienced worsening economic status decreased. The rate of hospitalized participants and those experiencing the loss of close ones did not change. Higher perceived stress, fear of COVID-19, fear of vaccination, and trust in institutions were significant longitudinal predictors of coronavirus-related PTSD regardless of country, sex, age, and student status. Institutions should provide more accurate programs for public health, so trust in institutions can be a protective and not a risk factor in future traumatic events. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health Roadmap: Where We Stand and Where to Go?)
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12 pages, 643 KiB  
Article
Homophily Effect in Trauma-Informed Classroom Training for School Personnel
by Alexis Zickafoose, Gary Wingenbach, Sana Haddad, Jamie Freeny and Josephine Engels
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(12), 7104; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19127104 - 9 Jun 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2880
Abstract
A national shortage of youth mental health professionals necessitates training others (e.g., school staff) to help youth with behavioral and mental health issues. Professional training in trauma-informed classroom (TIC) practices could increase school staff’s awareness of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs). The purpose was [...] Read more.
A national shortage of youth mental health professionals necessitates training others (e.g., school staff) to help youth with behavioral and mental health issues. Professional training in trauma-informed classroom (TIC) practices could increase school staff’s awareness of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs). The purpose was to determine the effect of homophily on participants’ perceptions or knowledge of TIC training. Mental Health America of Greater Houston (MHAGH) offered TIC training from 2019 to 2020 to Texas educators (N ≈ 29,900) from nine school districts that experienced significant natural and human-made traumatic events. Proportional stratified random samples were selected based on trainer type (experts vs. peer trainers). Perception was measured with close-ended items on five-point scales. Knowledge was measured with content-specific questions. Independent t-tests and two-way ANOVA revealed no significant interaction effects (i.e., trainer and test type) and no differences existed in perception or knowledge by trainer type. TIC training can be equally effective when delivered by homophilous peers (i.e., school staff) and heterophilous experts (i.e., mental health experts). COVID-19 worsened the effects of ACEs and youth mental health issues. High-quality training will increase school staff’s use of TIC practices. MHAGH’s train-the-trainer model helps educators supporting youth affected by ACEs and other life stressors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health Roadmap: Where We Stand and Where to Go?)
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8 pages, 291 KiB  
Article
The Relationship between Duration of Smartphone Uses and Anxiety in University Students during the COVID-19 Outbreak
by Jianmin Wang, Wang Li, Liang Ding and Shulei Chen
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(11), 6620; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19116620 - 29 May 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1911
Abstract
Background: During the COVID-19 pandemic, China adopted a home isolation policy, which caused lifestyle changes for university students, including increased smartphone use. Several studies indicate that problematic smartphone use is associated with anxiety. However, this association has not been examined in the context [...] Read more.
Background: During the COVID-19 pandemic, China adopted a home isolation policy, which caused lifestyle changes for university students, including increased smartphone use. Several studies indicate that problematic smartphone use is associated with anxiety. However, this association has not been examined in the context of epidemics. The aim of this study was to investigate whether the duration of smartphone use was associated with anxiety in Chinese university students during the COVID-19 pandemic. Methods: Participants included 9716 university students (5458 men and 4258 women) from Liaoning, China. We assessed the duration of smartphone use with a self-reported questionnaire. Anxiety was assessed using the generalized anxiety disorder seven-item scale. A multivariate logistic regression analysis was performed to determine the adjusted association between smartphone use and anxiety. Results: After adjusting for confounding factors, we observed a positive association between smartphone use duration and the prevalence of anxiety in all participating students. Compared with short periods of smartphone usage, the odds ratios (95% confidence interval) for moderate and long smartphone usage duration were 1.17 (1.00, 1.36) and 1.58 (1.36, 1.83), respectively. This significant positive association did not change in the sex-stratified analysis (for both men and women). Conclusions: Our examination of the association between duration of smartphone uses and university students’ anxiety levels revealed that long smartphone use was associated with a high prevalence of anxiety during the COVID-19 pandemic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health Roadmap: Where We Stand and Where to Go?)
16 pages, 584 KiB  
Article
Income Disparity and Mental Wellbeing among Adults in Semi-Urban and Rural Areas in Malaysia: The Mediating Role of Social Capital
by Mas Ayu Said, Govindamal Thangiah, Hazreen Abdul Majid, Rozmi Ismail, Tan Maw Pin, Hussein Rizal, Mohd Azlan Shah Zaidi, Daniel Reidpath and Tin Tin Su
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(11), 6604; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19116604 - 28 May 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2459
Abstract
Mental illness is rising worldwide and is more prevalent among the older population. Among others, socioeconomic status, particularly income, has a bearing on the prevalence of mental health. However, little is known about the underlying mechanism that explains the association between income and [...] Read more.
Mental illness is rising worldwide and is more prevalent among the older population. Among others, socioeconomic status, particularly income, has a bearing on the prevalence of mental health. However, little is known about the underlying mechanism that explains the association between income and mental health. Hence, this study seeks to examine the mediating effect of social capital on the association between income and mental illness. Cross-sectional data consisting of 6651 respondents aged 55 years and above were used in this study. A validated tool known as the Depression, Anxiety and Stress Scale, 21 items (DASS-21) was applied to examine mental illness, namely depression, anxiety, and stress. The Karlson, Holm, and Breen (KHB) method was employed to assess the intervening role of social capital on the association between income and mental illness. Results showed that those who disagreed in trust within the community had the highest partial mediation percentage. Those who disagreed in reciprocity, however, had the lowest partial mediation percentage, which explained the positive association between the middle 40% (M40) of the income group and depression, anxiety, and stress. Overall, the study suggests the need to increase trust and attachment within society to curb the occurrence of depression and anxiety. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health Roadmap: Where We Stand and Where to Go?)
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18 pages, 1107 KiB  
Article
Examining Anxiety, Sleep Quality, and Physical Activity as Predictors of Depression among University Students from Saudi Arabia during the Second Wave of the COVID-19 Pandemic
by Tahani K. Alshammari, Aljawharah M. Alkhodair, Hanan A. Alhebshi, Aleksandra M. Rogowska, Awatif B. Albaker, Nouf T. AL-Damri, Anfal F. Bin Dayel, Asma S. Alonazi, Nouf M. Alrasheed and Musaad A. Alshammari
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(10), 6262; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19106262 - 21 May 2022
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 3692
Abstract
Conducted during the second wave of the pandemic, this cross-sectional study examined the link between sleep quality, physical activity, exposure, and the impact of COVID-19 as predictors of mental health in Saudi undergraduate students. A convenience sample of 207 participants were recruited, 89% [...] Read more.
Conducted during the second wave of the pandemic, this cross-sectional study examined the link between sleep quality, physical activity, exposure, and the impact of COVID-19 as predictors of mental health in Saudi undergraduate students. A convenience sample of 207 participants were recruited, 89% of whom were females and 94% were single. The measures included questionnaires on the level of exposure and the perceived impact of COVID-19, a physical activity measure, GAD-7, PHQ-9, and PSQI. The results indicated that approximately 43% of participants exhibited moderate anxiety, and 50% were at risk of depression. Overall, 63.93% of students exposed to strict quarantine for at least 14 days (n = 39) exhibited a high risk of developing depression (χ2(1) = 6.49, p < 0.05, ϕ = 0.18). A higher risk of depression was also found in students whose loved ones lost their jobs (χ2(1) = 4.24, p < 0.05, ϕ = 0.14). Moreover, there was also a strong association between depression and anxiety (β = 0.33, p < 0.01), sleep quality (β = 0.32, p < 0.01), and the perceived negative impact of COVID-19 on socio-economic status (β = 0.26, p < 0.05), explaining 66.67% of depression variance. Our study highlights the socio-economic impact of this pandemic and the overwhelming prevalence of depression. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health Roadmap: Where We Stand and Where to Go?)
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15 pages, 562 KiB  
Article
Preschool Teachers’ Psychological Distress and Work Engagement during COVID-19 Outbreak: The Protective Role of Mindfulness and Emotion Regulation
by Mor Keleynikov, Joy Benatov and Rony Berger
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(5), 2645; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19052645 - 24 Feb 2022
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 3297
Abstract
COVID-19 has dramatically affected the mental health and work environment of the educational sector. Our primary aim was to investigate preschool teachers’ psychological distress and work engagement during the COVID-19 outbreak, while examining the possible protective role of participating in a mindfulness-based intervention [...] Read more.
COVID-19 has dramatically affected the mental health and work environment of the educational sector. Our primary aim was to investigate preschool teachers’ psychological distress and work engagement during the COVID-19 outbreak, while examining the possible protective role of participating in a mindfulness-based intervention geared to foster compassion (Call2Care-Israel for Teachers; C2C-IT) and emotion regulation. The prevalence of emotional distress, work engagement, and COVID-19 concerns were evaluated in 165 preschool teachers in the early stages of the COVID-19 outbreak in Israel through questionnaires. The findings showed that preschool teachers experienced increased emotional distress. Teachers who had participated in the C2C-IT intervention six months before the pandemic outbreak (N = 41) reported lower emotional distress, higher use of adaptive emotion regulation strategies, and higher work engagement, compared to their counterparts that had not participated in the intervention (N = 124). Emotion regulation strategies mediated the link between participating in CTC-IT intervention and emotional distress and work engagement. Teaching is a highly demanding occupation, especially during a pandemic, thus making it important to invest resources in empowering this population. The findings here suggest that the implementation of a mindfulness-based intervention during the school year can enhance teachers’ well-being, even during stressful events such as the COVID-19 pandemic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mental Health Roadmap: Where We Stand and Where to Go?)
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