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Mental health and resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic among Spanish residents: Do age and gender matter? An exploratory study
1  Department of Psychology and Sociology, Faculty of Human and Social Sciences, University of Zaragoza


Since the WHO designated the COVID-19 outbreak as a global pandemic in March 2020, Spain is one of the top ten countries around the world with the highest number of infected people. The COVID-19 pandemic not only damages individuals´ physical but also psychological health, increasing the probability of developing mental health problems. The exposure of population to the substantial psychosocial stress that the COVID-19 represents seems to lead them to experience lower feelings of life satisfaction and higher levels of state anxiety and death anxiety, especially among women, younger people and with lower resilience capacity. Despite their usefulness in intervention terms, data at this level on Spanish residents are still scarce. This study aims to explore the relations among age, gender, levels of resilience and mental health in a sample made up of 195 Spanish adults. It was conducted within three months from the state of alarm declared in Spain on March 14, 2020. Nonparametric tests conducted indicated that younger people experienced higher levels of death anxiety, and lower feelings of satisfaction with life. Moreover, younger women have less resilience. Taken as a whole, these findings suggest the importance of developing interventions that incorporate, especially among younger women, the strengthening of such a key personal resource as resilience capacity.

Keywords: COVID-19; mental health; age; gender; death anxiety; life satisfaction; resilience