Newly published work in the journal Frontiers in Global Women’s Health has unmasked a slew of mental health problems women, in particular, have experienced throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to researchers at the University of Calgary, gender differences were established when examining the psychological effects of the recent pandemic caused by SARS-CoV-2.
The examination involved data of more than 500 participants, the majority of which were women; and nearly all were in early-adulthood.
Conducted between late-March and early-June 2020, the research team detailed their findings indicating that women were considerably more likely than men to have experienced mental health problems during the pandemic.
Among the female participants, problems with sleep, mood, along with anxiety and depression, were considered to be more prevalent in comparison to their male counterpart. Empathy was also more highly prevalent with the female participants.
“Their symptoms worsened over time and with greater length of the isolation period. There was a progressive increase in anxiety, depression, poor sleep quality and trauma for males and females. But it was greater for females over time,” said co-author Veronica Guadagni in a news release.
Overall, the co-authors concluded in their findings: “Sex and gender differences seem to play a role in the individuals’ psychological and behavioral reactions to the COVID-19 pandemic.”
“These differences need to be considered in planning targeted psychological interventions.”