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1.
J Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci ; 77(4): e5-e10, 2022 04 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1709015

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic is an ongoing stressor that may have detrimental effects on mental health. Theoretical and empirical literature implies that individuals who are characterized by catastrophic appraisals of somatic cues, a tendency known as anxiety sensitivity, as well as by older subjective age, might be particularly vulnerable to depression and anxiety during the pandemic. Furthermore, subjective age might moderate the relations between anxiety sensitivity with depression and anxiety symptoms. Yet, research to date has not explored the contribution of both anxiety sensitivity and subjective age in explaining distress following stress in general, nor in light of the current COVID-19 pandemic. METHOD: Filling this gap, a convenience sample of 828 participants (Mage = 43.98, SD = 14.06) filled questionnaires measuring background variables, COVID-19-related stressors, anxiety sensitivity, subjective age, and anxiety and depression symptoms during the pandemic. RESULTS: Positive associations were found between anxiety sensitivity and subjective age, on the one hand, and anxiety and depression symptoms, on the other. Furthermore, subjective age moderated the relations between anxiety sensitivity with depression and anxiety symptoms. Although higher levels of anxiety sensitivity were related to depression and anxiety during the pandemic, these relations were significantly stronger among participants with an older subjective age. DISCUSSION: The findings are consistent with theories that view subjective age as an intraindividual construct involved in modulating important mental health outcomes in the context of coping with stress.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Anxiety/psychology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Depression/psychology , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2
2.
Eur J Psychotraumatol ; 12(1): 1968597, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1442971

ABSTRACT

Background: The COVID-19 pandemic might be experienced as an ongoing traumatic event and could result in peritraumatic stress symptoms. Evidence implies that individuals' levels of death anxiety, anxiety sensitivity, and difficulties in emotion regulation may contribute to their peritraumatic stress symptomatology in the aftermath of trauma exposure. Objective: The current study aimed to explore these hypotheses in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. Method: An online survey was conducted among a convenience sample of 846 Israeli adults from April 2 to 19 April 2020. COVID-19-related stressors, death anxiety, anxiety sensitivity, difficulties in emotion regulation, and peritraumatic stress symptoms were assessed via self-report questionnaires. Results: Analyses indicated significant relations between death anxiety, anxiety sensitivity, and emotion regulation difficulties, on the one hand, and peritraumatic stress symptoms, on the other. Three distinct profiles were identified. Furthermore, profile type - namely having low, medium, and high levels of death anxiety, anxiety sensitivity, and emotion dysregulation - had a significant effect in explaining peritraumatic stress symptoms. Conclusions: Results suggest that during the pandemic, levels of death anxiety, anxiety sensitivity, and emotion dysregulation may explain heterogeneity in individuals' trauma-related symptomatology.


Antecedentes: La pandemia del COVID-19 podría ser experimentada como un evento traumático en curso y podría resultar en síntomas de estrés peritraumático. La evidencia implica que los niveles individuales de la ansiedad por la muerte, la sensibilidad de la ansiedad, y las dificultades en la regulación emocional podrían contribuir a su sintomatología del estrés peritraumático en las secuelas de la exposición al trauma.Objetivo: El presente estudio buscó explorar estas hipótesis en el contexto de la pandemia del COVID-19.Método: Se realizó una encuesta en línea en una muestra por conveniencia de 846 adultos israelíes desde el 2 al 19 de abril de 2020. Los estresores relacionados al COVID-19, la ansiedad por la muerte, la sensibilidad de ansiedad, las dificultades en la regulación emocional, y los síntomas de estrés peritraumático fueron evaluados por medio de cuestionarios de auto-reporte.Resultados: Los análisis indicaron relaciones significativas entre la ansiedad por la muerte, la sensibilidad de la ansiedad, y las dificultades de regulación emocional, por un lado, y los síntomas de estrés peritraumático, por el otro lado. Tres perfiles distintivos fueron identificados. Además, el tipo de perfil ­ específicamente tener niveles bajos, medios, y altos de ansiedad por la muerte, sensibilidad de la ansiedad, y desregulación emocional ­ tuvieron un efecto significativo en explicar los síntomas de estrés peritraumático.Conclusión: Los resultados sugieren que, durante la pandemia, los niveles de ansiedad por la muerte, sensibilidad de la ansiedad, y desregulación emocional podrían explicar la heterogeneidad en la sintomatología relacionada al trauma de los individuos.

3.
J Interpers Violence ; : 8862605211021968, 2021 Jun 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1259117

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic may be experienced as traumatogenic and may fuel or exacerbate psychological distress and trauma-related symptoms. Based on trauma research, one might expect that survivors of childhood abuse would be susceptible to these negative outcomes during the pandemic, and that among this population a stronger relation between emotion regulation difficulties and symptomatology would be found. Aiming to explore these suppositions, an online survey was conducted among 710 Israeli adults. Of them, 370 were childhood abuse survivors. A history of childhood abuse, COVID-19-related stressors, overall psychological distress, and peritraumatic stress symptoms during the pandemic were assessed via self-report measures. Participants with a history of childhood abuse had elevated overall psychological distress as well as peritraumatic stress symptoms during the pandemic, compared to nonabused participants, above and beyond demographic characteristics and COVID-19-related stressors. Emotion regulation difficulties were related to elevated psychological distress and peritraumatic stress symptoms among both childhood abuse survivors and nonabused participants. Nonetheless, a history of childhood abuse moderated the relations between the emotion regulation difficulty of being unable to engage in goal-directed behaviors when distressed (on one hand) and mental outcomes (on the other): Although the associations between inability to engage in goal-directed behaviors, overall psychological distress, and peritraumatic stress symptoms were nonsignificant among nonabused participants, they were significant among childhood abuse survivors. The current findings suggest that a history of childhood abuse might be a risk factor for distress in the face of COVID-19, and that childhood abuse survivors would benefit from clinical interventions that promote emotion regulation skills during this ongoing global health crisis.

4.
J Psychiatr Res ; 132: 23-31, 2021 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-842479

ABSTRACT

Trauma survivors who suffer from posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms may be particularly vulnerable when facing the COVID-19 pandemic. Yet trauma exposure may also lead to salutogenic outcomes, known as posttraumatic growth (PTG). Nevertheless, the implications of PTG attributed to prior trauma, for trauma survivors' adjustment when facing additional stressors, are unclear. Addressing this gap, 528 Israeli trauma survivors were assessed for PTG and PTSD symptoms attributed to prior trauma, as well as peritraumatic stress symptoms related to the pandemic, as part of an online survey. Analyses revealed that being younger, female, quarantined, negatively self-rating one's health status, and suffering from PTSD symptoms were associated with elevated peritraumatic stress symptoms. Furthermore, PTG attributed to prior trauma made a significant contribution in explaining elevated intrusion, avoidance, and hyperarousal symptoms. The present results point to the need for clinicians to take into account reports of PTG attributed to prior trauma when treating trauma survivors during the current pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Health Status , Posttraumatic Growth, Psychological , Psychological Trauma/psychology , Quarantine/psychology , Stress Disorders, Traumatic/psychology , Survivors/psychology , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , COVID-19/prevention & control , Diagnostic Self Evaluation , Female , Humans , Israel , Male , Middle Aged , Young Adult
5.
J Affect Disord ; 277: 129-137, 2020 12 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-703989

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is a substantial stressor that could eventuate in psychological distress. Evidence suggests that individuals previously exposed to traumatic events, and particularly to continuous traumatic stress (CTS), might be more vulnerable to distress when facing additional stressors. This study aimed to investigate these suppositions in the context of the ongoing shelling of Israel from the Israel-Gaza border, which continues even amidst the COVID-19 crisis. METHOD: An online survey was conducted among Israel's general population. The sample included 976 participants. Seven-hundred-and-ninety-three participants had been exposed to traumatic events, with 255 participants reporting CTS. Trauma exposure, COVID-19-related stressors, and psychological distress related to COVID-19 (anxiety, depression, and peritraumatic stress symptoms) were assessed. RESULTS: Most participants reported experiencing at least one psychiatric symptom related to COVID-19. Being younger, female, not in a relationship, having a below-average income, being diagnosed with the disease, living alone during the outbreak, having a close other in a high-risk group, and negatively self-rating one's health status were associated with elevated distress. Individuals who had been exposed to trauma, and to CTS in particular, had elevated anxiety, depression, and peritraumatic stress symptoms compared to individuals without such a history or to survivors of non-ongoing traumatic events. CTS moderated the relations between PTSD symptoms, anxiety symptoms, and peritraumatic stress symptoms, with significantly stronger relations found among individuals exposed to CTS. LIMITATIONS: This study relied on convenience sampling. CONCLUSIONS: Trauma survivors, and particularly traumatized individuals exposed to CTS, seem at risk for psychological distress related to COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Anxiety/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections , Depression/epidemiology , Exposure to Violence/statistics & numerical data , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral , Psychological Distress , Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic/epidemiology , Adolescent , Adult , Age Factors , Aged , Anxiety/psychology , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Depression/psychology , Exposure to Violence/psychology , Female , Humans , Israel/epidemiology , Male , Middle Aged , SARS-CoV-2 , Sex Factors , Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic/psychology , Stress, Psychological/epidemiology , Stress, Psychological/psychology , Surveys and Questionnaires , Young Adult
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