Anxiety, Self-Compassion, Gender Differences and COVID-19: Predicting Self-Care Behaviors and Fear of COVID-19 Based on Anxiety and Self-Compassion with an Emphasis on Gender Differences

  • Mohsen Mohammadpour ORCID Department of Clinical Psychology, Student Research Committee, Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, Kermanshah, Iran.
  • Vajiheh Ghorbani ORCID Mail Department of Clinical Psychology, School of Medicine, Kashan University of Medical Sciences, Kashan, Iran.
  • Samad Khoramnia ORCID Department of Clinical Psychology, Student Research Committee, Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, Kermanshah, Iran.
  • Seyed Mojtaba Ahmadi ORCID Department of Clinical Psychology, Student Research Committee, Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, Kermanshah, Iran.
  • Mahdiyeh Ghvami ORCID Department of Counseling, Kharazmi University of Tehran, Tehran,Iran.
  • Mahboob Maleki ORCID Department of Clinical Psychology, Allameh Tabatabai University of Tehran, Tehran,Iran.
Keywords:
Anxiety, Coronavirus, Fear of COVID-19, Gender Differences, Self-Compassion, Self-Care Behaviors

Abstract

Objective: The outbreak of COVID-19 has different effects on people's psychological and social aspects. This study aimed to investigate the relationship between anxiety, self-compassion, and gender differences with self-care behaviors and fear of COVID-19 in Kermanshah.

Method: In the cross-sectional study, 403 people answered online questions on the Generalized Anxiety Disorder 7-Item (GAD-7) Scale, Self-Compassion Scale (SCS), Fear of COVID-19 Scale (FCV-19S), and a questionnaire focusing on COVID-19-related behavior. Pearson correlation coefficient and regression analysis were used for data analysis. Results: There was a significant relationship between social distance and gender, and people who observed social distancing reported higher levels of fear of COVID-19 (p < 0.001). No significant relationship was found between handwashing behaviour and gender variables, marital status, and education (p > 0.05). There was a significant difference between those who answered yes to self-care behaviours related to washing and those who answered no in terms of variables of fear of COVID-19, the overall score of compassion, and subscales of compassion, including self-kindness and isolation (p < 0.05). In relation to fear of COVID-19, married status, anxiety, and common humanity had a positive relationship with fear of COVID-19. However, self-judgment was negatively related to fear of COVID-19 (p < 0.05).

Conclusion: According to the findings of the present study, men and people who are less afraid of COVID-19 are more likely not to observe self-care behaviors. Therefore, providing training about treatment protocols is necessary for these people. To reduce the fear of this disease in people with high levels of fear, psychologists, psychiatrists, and other medical staff can implement protocols to increase compassion.

References

1. Harper CA, Satchell LP, Fido D, Latzman RD. Functional Fear Predicts Public Health Compliance in the COVID-19 Pandemic. Int J Ment Health Addict. 2020:1-14.
2. Everett JA, Colombatto C, Chituc V, Brady WJ, Crockett M. The effectiveness of moral messages on public health behavioral intentions during the COVID-19 pandemic. 2020.




3. Wang D, Hu B, Hu C, Zhu F, Liu X, Zhang J, et al. Clinical Characteristics of 138 Hospitalized
Patients With 2019 Novel Coronavirus-Infected Pneumonia in Wuhan, China. Jama. 2020;323(11):1061-9.
4. Saffarinia, M. The prediction of mental health based on the anxiety and the social cohesion that caused by Coronavirus. Social Psychology Research, 2020; 9(36): 129-141.
5. Lee SA. Coronavirus Anxiety Scale: A brief mental health screener for COVID-19 related anxiety. Death Stud. 2020;44(7):393-401.
6. Banerjee D. The COVID-19 outbreak: Crucial role the psychiatrists can play. Asian J Psychiatr. 2020;50:102014.
7. Coyne LW, Gould ER, Grimaldi M, Wilson KG, Baffuto G, Biglan A. First Things First: Parent Psychological Flexibility and Self-Compassion During COVID-19. Behav Anal Pract. 2020:1-7.
8. Lai J, Ma S, Wang Y, Cai Z, Hu J, Wei N, et al. Factors Associated With Mental Health Outcomes Among Health Care Workers Exposed to Coronavirus Disease 2019. JAMA Netw Open. 2020;3(3):e203976.
9. Xiang YT, Yang Y, Li W, Zhang L, Zhang Q, Cheung T, et al. Timely mental health care for the 2019 novel coronavirus outbreak is urgently needed. Lancet Psychiatry. 2020;7(3):228-9.
10. Moghanibashi-Mansourieh A. Assessing the anxiety level of Iranian general population during COVID-19 outbreak. Asian J Psychiatr. 2020;51:102076.
11. González-Sanguino C, Ausín B, Castellanos M, Saiz J, López-Gómez A, Ugidos C, et al. Mental health consequences during the initial stage of the 2020 Coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) in Spain. Brain Behav Immun. 2020;87:172-6.
12. Lee SA, Jobe MC, Mathis AA. Mental health characteristics associated with dysfunctional coronavirus anxiety. Psychol Med. 2020:1-2.
13. Shultz JM, Baingana F, Neria Y. The 2014 Ebola outbreak and mental health: current status and recommended response. Jama. 2015;313(6):567-8.
14. Shigemura J, Ursano RJ, Morganstein JC, Kurosawa M, Benedek DM. Public responses to the novel 2019 coronavirus (2019-nCoV) in Japan: Mental health consequences and target populations. Psychiatry Clin Neurosci. 2020;74(4):281-2.
15. Rubin GJ, Wessely S. The psychological effects of quarantining a city. Bmj. 2020;368:m313.
16. Zhang WR, Wang K, Yin L, Zhao WF, Xue Q, Peng M, et al. Mental Health and Psychosocial Problems of Medical Health Workers during the COVID-19 Epidemic in China. Psychother Psychosom. 2020;89(4):242-50.
17. Binagwaho A. We Need Compassionate Leadership Management Based on Evidence to Defeat COVID-19. Int J Health Policy Manag. 2020.
18. Smith GD, Ng F, Ho Cheung Li W. COVID-19: Emerging compassion, courage and resilience in the face of misinformation and adversity. J Clin Nurs. 2020;29(9-10):1425-8.
19. Esperandio MR. Caring for the Mind is Caring for the Spirit: Spirituality and Health in times of Coronavirus COVID-19.
20. Neff K. Self-compassion: An alternative conceptualization of a healthy attitude toward oneself. Self and identity. 2003 Apr 1;2(2):85-101.
21. MacBeth A, Gumley A. Exploring compassion: a meta-analysis of the association between self-compassion and psychopathology. Clin Psychol Rev. 2012;32(6):545-52.
22. Marsh IC, Chan SWY, MacBeth A. Self-compassion and Psychological Distress in Adolescents-a Meta-analysis. Mindfulness (N Y). 2018;9(4):1011-27.
23. Muris P, Petrocchi N. Protection or Vulnerability? A Meta-Analysis of the Relations Between the Positive and Negative Components of Self-Compassion and Psychopathology. Clin Psychol Psychother. 2017;24(2):373-83.
24. Zessin U, Dickhäuser O, Garbade S. The Relationship Between Self-Compassion and Well-Being: A Meta-Analysis. Appl Psychol Health Well Being. 2015;7(3):340-64.
25. Allen AB, Goldwasser ER, Leary MR. Self-Compassion and Well-being among Older Adults. Self Identity. 2012;11(4):428-53.
26. Gilbert P, Irons C. Focused therapies and compassionate mind training for shame and self-attacking. Compassion: Conceptualisations, research and use in psychotherapy. 2005:263-325.
27. Dupont WD, Plummer WD, Jr. Power and sample size calculations for studies involving linear regression. Control Clin Trials. 1998;19(6):589-601.
28. Carvalho LF, Pianowski G, Gonçalves AP. Personality differences and COVID-19: are extroversion and conscientiousness personality traits associated with engagement with containment measures? Trends Psychiatry Psychother. 2020.
29. Ahorsu DK, Lin CY, Imani V, Saffari M, Griffiths MD, Pakpour AH. The Fear of COVID-19 Scale: Development and Initial Validation. Int J Ment Health Addict. 2020:1-9.
30. Spitzer RL, Kroenke K, Williams JB, Löwe B. A brief measure for assessing generalized anxiety disorder: the GAD-7. Archives of internal medicine. 2006 May 22;166(10):1092-7.
31. Zargar F. Comparing the effectiveness of acceptance-based behavior therapy to applied relaxation on worry and generalized anxiety disorder symptoms. Journal of Fundamentals of Mental Health. 2014;17(1):26-30.
32. Azizi A, Mohammadkhani P, Lotfi S, Bahramkhani M. The validity and reliability of the Iranian version of the Self-Compassion Scale. Practice in Clinical Psychology. 2013;1(3):149-55.
33. Wilder-Smith A, Freedman DO. Isolation, quarantine, social distancing and community containment: pivotal role for old-style public health measures in the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) outbreak. J Travel Med. 2020;27(2).
34. Xiang YT, Zhao YJ, Liu ZH, Li XH, Zhao N, Cheung T, et al. The COVID-19 outbreak and psychiatric hospitals in China: managing challenges through mental health service reform. Int J Biol Sci. 2020;16(10):1741-4.
35. Zhang C, Yang L, Liu S, Ma S, Wang Y, Cai Z, et al. Survey of Insomnia and Related Social Psychological Factors Among Medical Staff Involved in the 2019 Novel Coronavirus Disease Outbreak. Front Psychiatry. 2020;11:306.
36. Liebrenz M, Bhugra D, Buadze A, Schleifer R. Caring for persons in detention suffering with mental illness during the Covid-19 outbreak. Forensic science international. Mind and law. 2020;1.
37. Johal SS. Psychosocial impacts of quarantine during disease outbreaks and interventions that may help to relieve strain. N Z Med J. 2009;122(1296):47-52.
38. Marjanovic Z, Greenglass ER, Coffey S. The relevance of psychosocial variables and working conditions in predicting nurses' coping strategies during the SARS crisis: an online questionnaire survey. Int J Nurs Stud. 2007;44(6):991-8.
39. Wang C, Pan R, Wan X, Tan Y, Xu L, Ho CS, et al. Immediate Psychological Responses and Associated Factors during the Initial Stage of the 2019 Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Epidemic among the General Population in China. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2020;17(5).
40. Leung GM, Lam TH, Ho LM, Ho SY, Chan BH, Wong IO, et al. The impact of community psychological responses on outbreak control for severe acute respiratory syndrome in Hong Kong. J Epidemiol Community Health. 2003;57(11):857-63.
41. Mortensen CR, Becker DV, Ackerman JM, Neuberg SL, Kenrick DT. Infection breeds reticence: the effects of disease salience on self-perceptions of personality and behavioral avoidance tendencies. Psychol Sci. 2010;21(3):440-7.
42. Schaller M, Murray DR. Pathogens, personality, and culture: disease prevalence predicts worldwide variability in sociosexuality, extraversion, and openness to experience. J Pers Soc Psychol. 2008;95(1):212-21.
43. Maunder R, Hunter J, Vincent L, Bennett J, Peladeau N, Leszcz M, et al. The immediate psychological and occupational impact of the 2003 SARS outbreak in a teaching hospital. Cmaj. 2003;168(10):1245-51.
44. Tam CW, Pang EP, Lam LC, Chiu HF. Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) in Hong Kong in 2003: stress and psychological impact among frontline healthcare workers. Psychol Med. 2004;34(7):1197-204.
45. Taylor S. The psychology of pandemics: Preparing for the next global outbreak of infectious disease: Cambridge Scholars Publishing; 2019.
46. Perez-Blasco J, Sales A, Meléndez JC, Mayordomo T. The effects of mindfulness and self-compassion on improving the capacity to adapt to stress situations in elderly people living in the community. Clinical Gerontologist. 2016;39(2):90-103.
47. Liu N, Zhang F, Wei C, Jia Y, Shang Z, Sun L, et al. Prevalence and predictors of PTSS during COVID-19 outbreak in China hardest-hit areas: Gender differences matter. Psychiatry Res. 2020;287:112921.
48. Raab K. Mindfulness, self-compassion, and empathy among health care professionals: a review of the literature. J Health Care Chaplain. 2014;20(3):95-108.
49. Li S, Wang Y, Xue J, Zhao N, Zhu T. The Impact of COVID-19 Epidemic Declaration on Psychological Consequences: A Study on Active Weibo Users. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2020;17(6).
Published
2020-07-20
How to Cite
1.
Mohammadpour M, Ghorbani V, Khoramnia S, Ahmadi SM, Ghvami M, Maleki M. Anxiety, Self-Compassion, Gender Differences and COVID-19: Predicting Self-Care Behaviors and Fear of COVID-19 Based on Anxiety and Self-Compassion with an Emphasis on Gender Differences. Iran J Psychiatry. 15(3):213-219.
Section
Original Article(s)