IMPACT OF COVID-19 PANDEMIC ON MENTAL HEALTH AND SOCIAL SUPPORT AMONG ADULTS IN THE AGE GROUP OF 18 TO 60 YEARS RESIDING IN THE FARASAN REGION, KINGDOM OF SAUDI ARABIA
Introduction. The COVID-19 pandemic has brought into focus the mental health of various affected populations. It is known that the prevalence of epidemics accentuates or creates new stressors, including fear and worry for oneself or loved ones, constraints on physical movement and social activities due to quarantine, and sudden and radical lifestyle changes.
Material and methods. This study aimed to assess the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on mental health and social support among adults in the age group of 18 to 60 years residing in the Farasan community, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Through a quantitative survey approach and descriptive design, the 48 adults were selected by the non-probability purposive sampling method. Initially, personal information was obtained. The self-administered questionnaire on the Impact of Event Scale-Revised (IES-R) was used, which was validated in Arabic to determine the extent of psychological impact after exposure to a public health crisis. The modified rating scale was used to assess the negative mental health impact; and impacts on social and family support, need-based Education about COVID-19, and its coping mechanism through pamphlets.
Results. The results of the study were presented as the Psychological Impact of COVID-19 pandemic by "Impact of Event" total score (mean±SD), which was 36.4±17.31, "Intrusion" domain was 12.83±6.192, "Avoidance" domain was 13.19±6.81, while "Hyperarousal" domain was 10.38 ± 4.31. Also, 6 (12.5%) of the sample suffered a severe impact, 10 (20.8%) were moderately affected, and 12 (25%) were mildly affected. The younger people (18-30 years old), females, and university-educated people reported a higher psychological impact than older males or people with post-graduate degrees. Persons working in the medical field reported a lower psychological impact than others. Also, people who live in urban areas or have chronic diseases had higher psychological impact scores.
Conclusion. Age and rural residency were negative predictors of the "Impact of Event" scores. At the same time, the female gender or the presence of chronic conditions was a positive predictor for the high "Impact of Event" score. Positive impacts had and family and social support.
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