Practicing social isolation during a pandemic in Brazil: a description of psychosocial characteristics and personality traits during the COVID-19 lockout
This article was originally published here
Front Sociol. May 10, 2021; 6: 615232. doi: 10.3389 / fsoc.2021.615232. eCollection 2021.
The experience of the pandemic caused by the Coronavirus and the disease that results from it (COVID-19) has highlighted weaknesses long neglected by the scientific community and by various political and social institutions. The pandemic has also brought to light certain social practices resulting from individual behaviors, such as wearing a mask and practicing social isolation. She demonstrated the need for social engagement and prosocial behaviors if societies are to respond successfully. The aim of this article is to assess the psychological and socio-demographic characteristics associated with the observance or non-compliance of individuals with these practices in two different phases of the pandemic experience in Brazil: during the first month and after three months. Participants in the first phase of the study were recruited through advertisements in media and social networks. 1,914 people aged 14 to 81 agreed to participate, of which 78.2% were women, from 25 federative units in Brazil. In the second phase, 761 people who participated in the first phase were reassessed. The authors used the following instruments for data collection: a standardized questionnaire collecting information on socio-demographic characteristics and the dynamics of social isolation; the Kessler Psychological Distress Scale; the life satisfaction scale; the scale of positive and negative conditions; and the Reduced Personality Markers and the Stress State Scale. All the instruments used presented evidence of validity and adequate indices of reliability. The comparison of categorical exploratory variables with the reasons for following social isolation protocols was performed using Pearson chi-square, and the comparison of continuous exploratory variables was performed using the Mann-Whitney test. . Analysis of covariance was performed using as covariates those that showed significance / effect on isolation in previous analyzes. The results showed that respondents who practiced social isolation to comply with government recommendations had lower scores on the neuroticism and consciousness scales. They also reported less stress, anxiety, and depression, and less general distress. Overall, these respondents also showed more positive affect and tended to reframe stress in a more positive way than others. These preliminary results describe the psychological characteristics of individuals and their associations with social behaviors in times of collective stress and high social risk.