1Fatima tuz Zehra, 1Aamrah wakil, 1Sana Rizwan, 1Syed Tafazzul H. Zaidi, 2Jawed Akbar Dars
1Jinnah Sindh Medical University, Karachi, Pakistan; 2Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Center, Karachi, Pakistan
The Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic still persists to be a major concern since it’s outbreak in December of 2019. The novelty of this disease leads to the uncertainty surrounding it while the disruption to daily routine can pose an adverse effect on the mental health of individuals. This study was conducted to analyse the psychological impact i.e. depression, anxiety and stress levels, in the residents of Karachi, Pakistan, during the initial stage of the COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent lockdown imposed to control it. It also aimed to establish the contributing factors, in addition to the primary reason- the disease itself- that could possibly incite panic and result in increased levels of psychological distress in the target population..
Material(s) and Method(s):
An online survey was circulated, and snowball sampling technique was used to collect the data of 520 residents of Karachi which were analyzed using Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 23.0.
Out of the total participants 63.5% screened positive for depression, 49.6% for anxiety and 37.1% for stress; out of these 29% ,22% and 20% reported symptoms of severe or extremely severe levels of depression, anxiety and stress respectively. Demographically, younger age, unmarried status, nonparent status, and lower socioeconomic status were significantly associated with higher levels of depression, anxiety and stress.
This study highlights the need for government and healthcare authorities to consider the psychological impact of the lock-down among residents of low and middle income countries and promote overall health by developing strategies to curb psychological stress.