Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci 2021; 25 (22): 6941-6958

DOI: 10.26355/eurrev_202111_27243

COVID-19 pandemic related excessive electronic media exposure and mental health in Saudi Arabia

S. Alnohair, N.K. Syed, H.G. Ahmed, F. Sharaf, F. Alshehri, S. Haque, M.D. Griffiths

Department of Family and Community Medicine, College of Medicine, Qassim University, Buraydah, Saudi Arabia. shafiul.haque@hotmail.com


OBJECTIVE: Due to the continued spread of COVID-19 and the emergence of novel mutated viral variants, families all over the world are experiencing wide-ranging stressors that threaten not only their financial well-being but also their physical and mental health. The present study assessed the association between excessive electronic media exposure of pandemic-related news and mental health of the residents of Ha’il Province, Saudi Arabia. The present study also assessed the prevalence of perceived stress, fear of COVID-19, anxiety, depression, and loneliness due to COVID-19-related restrictions in the same population.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: A total of 490 residents of Ha’il Province participated in a cross-sectional online survey during a two-month period (March to April 2021). A validated 38-item self-report survey was used to collect the data.

RESULTS: Significant associations were reported between excessive electronic media exposure and the prevalence of perceived stress (χ2=140.56; p<.001), generalized anxiety (χ2=74.55; p<.001), depression (χ2=71.58; p<.001), COVID-19-related fear (χ2=24.54; p<.001), and loneliness (χ2=11.46; p<.001). It was also found that participants without depressive symptoms were 0.28 times less likely to have been exposed to excessive electronic media exposure (AOR: 0.28; C.I. 0.16-0.48; p<.001). Similarly, participants with no stress/mild stress were 0.32 times less likely to have been exposed to excessive electronic media exposure (AOR: 0.32; C.I. 0.19-0.52; p<.001).

CONCLUSIONS: The findings of the present study suggest an urgent need for educational resilience programs (online and in-person) for susceptible individuals (females, unemployed, urban residents, etc.). Such programs would help them to develop skills to cope with the psychological impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Free PDF Download

To cite this article

S. Alnohair, N.K. Syed, H.G. Ahmed, F. Sharaf, F. Alshehri, S. Haque, M.D. Griffiths
COVID-19 pandemic related excessive electronic media exposure and mental health in Saudi Arabia

Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci
Year: 2021
Vol. 25 - N. 22
Pages: 6941-6958
DOI: 10.26355/eurrev_202111_27243