• Christoph Lindner
  • Ibolya Kotta
  • Eszter Eniko Marschalko
  • Kinga Szabo
  • Kinga Kalcza-Janosi
  • Jan Retelsdorf
Studies provide evidence that distress, (health) anxiety, and depressive symptoms were high during the first weeks of COVID-19 lockdown restrictions, decreasing over time (possibly due to individuals’ protective psychological factors). Relations between different lockdown restrictions, mental health issues, and protective factors need to be explored, since even small lockdown effects might increase the risk of future mental health issues. We merged objective lockdown stringency data with individual data (N = 1001) to examine differences in lockdown effects in strict lockdown (Romania) and mild lockdown (Hungary) conditions between March and May 2020 on stressors and mental health symptoms, taking protective factors into account. The stricter lockdown in Romania revealed higher levels of perceived risk of infection, distress intolerance, and COVID-19 health anxiety. Protective psychological factors were not affected by the lockdown measures. Surpassing psychological flexibility and resilient coping, self-control proved to be the most promising protective factor. It is recommended that future research merge objective data with study data to investigate the effects of different COVID-19 lockdown measures on mental health and protective factors. Policy decisions should consider lockdown-dependent consequences of mental health issues. Intervention programs are suggested to mitigate mental health issues and to strengthen peoples’ protective psychological factors.
ZeitschriftInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
PublikationsstatusVeröffentlicht - 22.04.2022
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ID: 1915978