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Actas espanolas de psiquiatria ; 49(4):180-193, 2021.
Article in English | Scopus | ID: covidwho-1332678


The World Health Organization declared a pandemic due to COVID-19 on 11 March 2020 and remarked on the relevance of studying its consequences on mental health. A cross-sectional study was conducted to evaluate the immediate psychological response to the pandemic and quarantine in Spain.

International Journal of Environmental Research & Public Health [Electronic Resource] ; 18(7):02, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1209843


BACKGROUND: Current research has pointed out an increased risk of mental health problems during the COVID-19 pandemic in women compared to men, however the reason for this difference remains unclear. The aim of this research is to study early psychological responses to the pandemic in the Spanish general population, focusing on gender differences. METHODS: Nine to 14 days after the declaration of a state of emergency an online survey was conducted assessing sociodemographic, health, behavioral and COVID-19-related variables. Mental health status was evaluated by the Depression, Anxiety and Stress Scale (DASS-21), the Impact of Event Scale-Revised (IES-R), and the Self-Care Scale (SCS). RESULTS: The study included 3520 respondents: 2611 women and 909 men. Women scored significantly higher in DASS-21 and IES-R (p < 0.05) and were more likely to somatize, suffer from hypochondriasis, sleeping disturbances and claustrophobia (p < 0.05). Being a woman can be considered a risk factor for intrusive thoughts, avoidance mechanisms, stress and anxiety (Odd Ratio = 2.7/2.3/2.3/1.6). The risk of presenting posttraumatic symptoms and emotional distress was greater in women (Odd Ratio = 6.77/4.59). General linear models to predict IES-R and DASS-21 scores clarified which variables were gender specific, such as main concerns. CONCLUSIONS: This study provides evidence that at early stages of the pandemic, women mental health was more impacted and that both genders show different concerns. Gender perspective in secondary and tertiary prevention strategies must be taken into account when facing the distress associated with the pandemic.