Pre and Post Pandemic Depressive and Anxious Symptoms in Children and Adolescents in Northern Chile

Caqueo-Urizar, Alejandra; Atencio-Quevedo, Diego; Ponce-Correa, Felipe; Mena-Chamorro, Patricio; Urzua, Alfonso; Flores, Jerome


The psychological effects of the COVID-19 pandemic still represent a focus of concern, especially in children and adolescents who are a group particularly vulnerable to the psychological consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, mainly due to the loss of socialization and leisure spaces. The aim of the study is to determine the variation in the levels of depressive and anxious symptomatology in children and adolescents in the North of Chile. Methods: A Repeated cross-sectional design (RCS) was used. The sample consisted of a total of 475 students aged 12 to 18 years (high school) from educational establishments in the city of Arica. To evaluate the changes in the mental health of students associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, the same mental health measures applied to students were compared in two waves (2018-2021). Results: An increase in the symptomatology levels of depression, anxiety, social anxiety, and problems with the family, while a decrease in problems with school and peers was observed. Conclusions: The results show that there is an increase in mental health problems associated with the periods of time in which the COVID-19 pandemic transformed the social relation spaces and classrooms of secondary school students. The observed changes point to future challenges, which include that it may be important to improve the coordination and integration of mental health professionals in educational centers and schools.

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Título según WOS: ID WOS:000939226500001 Not found in local WOS DB
Volumen: 12
Número: 4
Editorial: MDPI
Fecha de publicación: 2023


Notas: ISI