MENTAL HEALTH AND SOCIAL ACTIVITY PARTICIPATION DURING THE COVID 19 PANDEMIC IN DUHOK CITY
Background: Stay-at-home orders in response to the COVID-19 pandemic have forced abrupt changes to daily routines and lifestyles. This study assessed changes in mental health and social activity during the confinement period, in response to the global pandemic.
Methods: This study was a face-to-face interview survey targeting adults in Duhok city, Kurdistan Region of Iraq. The questionnaire was distributed from October 2021 to February 2022, and collected information on mental well-being, mood, and social activity participation. All questions were presented as “before” and “during” the COVID-19 pandemic.
Results: In total, 407 adult participants have included: 207 females and 200 males. Overall, during the pandemic, mental well-being score was reduced by 13.4% (particularly for the employed), and social participation by 11.1% (particularly for the older age group). Around the same time, the bad mood and feelings score increased by 51.3%. These changes are expected and have been reporworldwidewide.
Conclusion: The COVID-19 pandemic produced significant negative lifestyle effects well beyond the virus itself, and confining people has led to a decline in mental health and social activities. People need support to counteract the effects of confinement on mental well-being, e.g., by providing basic life needs and enhancing at-home communication and physical activity.
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