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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

UNICEF Innocenti's curated library of COVID-19 + Children research

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Gender-specific related factors for suicidal ideation during COVID-19 pandemic lockdown among 5,175 Chinese adolescents

Jin Zhu; Baohua Li; Fengcheng Hao (et al.)

Published: March 2022   Journal: Frontiers in Public Health
Suicide was an urgent issue during the pandemic period in adolescents. However, few studies were focused on suicide during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic lockdown. An online survey was conducted among 5,175 Chinese adolescents from June 9th to 29th in 2020 to investigate the prevalence of suicidal ideation (SI) during COVID-19 pandemic lockdown. A gender-specific stepwise logistic regression model was used. All analyses were performed with STATA 15.0
Registered psychiatric service use, self-harm and suicides of children and young people aged 0–24 before and during the COVID-19 pandemic: a systematic review

Wan Mohd Azam Wan Mohd Yunus; Laura Kauhanen; Andre Sourander (et al.)

Published: February 2022   Journal: Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Mental Health

The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted on psychiatric symptoms of children and young people, but many psychiatric services have been disrupted. It is unclear how service use, self-harm and suicide has changed since the pandemic started. To gain timely information, this systematic review focused on studies based on administrative data that compared psychiatric service use, self-harm and suicide before and during the pandemic among children and young people. A systematic review of studies published in English from 1 January 2020 to 22 March 2021 was conducted, using the Web of Science, PubMed, Embase and PsycINFO databases. Increases or reductions in service use were calculated and compared using percentages. Of the 2,676 papers retrieved, 18 were eligible for the review and they provided data from 19 countries and regions.

Non-suicidal self-injury: a school-based peer education program for adolescents during COVID-19 pandemic

Annarosa Cipriano; Cristina Aprea; Ludovica Bellone (et al.)

Published: February 2022   Journal: Frontiers in Psychiatry

Non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI) constitutes a major health concern among youth. However, less is known about the useful ways to prevent NSSI. As such, the NSSI- Peer Education Program (NSSI-PEP) aims to intervene on the vulnerability factors that predispose to NSSI by applying a peer education approach. The NSSI-PEP is grounded on the psychoanalytic tradition’s tenets, implementing modules targeting four crucial risk factors for NSSI: pubertal transformation, body image, self-esteem, and emotion regulation. Selected 8th grade students were trained to serve as peer educators and held a peer-education intervention for 6th and 7th grade students. Pre- and post-intervention assessments were conducted in order to evaluate the program’s effectiveness.

Prevalence and associated factors of depression, anxiety and suicidality among Chinese high school E-learning students during the COVID-19 lockdown

Xiaodan Peng; Shunwei Liang; Lili Liu (et al.)

Published: January 2022   Journal: Current Psychology
The outbreak of Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in 2019 and the resulting quarantine may have increased the prevalence of mental health problems in adolescents. The aim of this study was to explore the association between the efects of home-based learning during the pandemic and the risks of depression, anxiety, and suicidality among junior and senior high school students. An online survey using Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9) and Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD-7) was conducted between 12 to 30 April 2020, on a total of 39,751 students. Multivariable logistic regression analysis was used to analyze the risk factors of associated depression, anxiety and suicidality during the pandemic.
Comparison of self-harm or overdose among adolescents and young adults before vs during the COVID-19 pandemic in Ontario

Joel G. Ray; Peter C. Austin; Kayvan Aflaki (et al.)

Published: January 2022   Journal: JAMA Network Open

Self-harm and deaths among adolescents and young adults are notably related to drug poisonings and suicide. With the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic, there are projections about a greater likelihood of such events arising among adolescents and young adults. To evaluate the risk of self-harm, overdose, and all-cause mortality among adolescents and young adults during the COVID-19 pandemic. This population-based cohort study took place in Ontario, Canada, where a universal health care system captures all emergency department (ED) visits, hospitalizations, and deaths. The participants included all adolescents and young adults born in Ontario between 1990 and 2006, who were aged 14 to 24 years between March 1, 2018, and June 30, 2021.

Crisis response and suicidal patterns in U.S. youth before and during COVID-19: a latent class analysis

Jennifer D. Runkle; Shrikanth Yadav; Kurt Michael (et al.)

Published: January 2022   Journal: Journal of Adolescent Health

This study characterized the unobserved patterns in crisis response among youth in the U.S. from March to December 2020 and determined the characteristics of vulnerable subgroups who were at increased risk for suicide due to the pandemic. A latent class analysis of crisis support-seeking from a national text-based crisis platform, (n = 179,497, aged 24 years or younger) for 11 crisis concerns (e.g., depression, anxiety/stress, suicidal thoughts, isolation, abuse, bereavement, relationships) was performed on three study periods: (1) January 2017 to December 2020, (2) prepandemic: 1 January 2017 to 12 March 2020, and (3) pandemic: 13 March to 20 December 2020. Demographic characteristics (age, race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, and gender identity) were used as predictors for class membership using the three-step method.

Effect of subjective economic status during the COVID-19 pandemic on depressive symptoms and suicidal ideation among South Korean adolescents

Jong Min Han; Hyunjong Song

Published: December 2021   Journal: Psychology Research and Behavior Management
This study identified the relationships between perceived household economic status and household economic downturn due to COVID-19 and adolescent depressive symptoms and suicidal ideation. Participants for this study were extracted from the 13th Korea Youth Risk Behavior Web-Based Survey, conducted from August to November 2020. The participants comprised 54,948 middle and high school students selected by stratified random cluster sampling.
Comparison of stress and suicide-related behaviors among Korean youths before and during the COVID-19 pandemic

So Young Kim; Hye-Rim Kim; Bumjung Park (et al.)

Published: December 2021   Journal: JAMA Network Open

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a substantial psychological effect on young people. A quantitative assessment of the association between the pandemic and stress and suicidality in youths is needed. This study aims to investigate the association of the COVID-19 pandemic with self-reported stress and suicide-related behaviors in youths. This cross-sectional study used data from the the Korea Youth Risk Behavior Web-based Survey (KYRBWS) conducted in 2019 and 2020 with youths aged 12 to 18 years. Statistical analysis was performed from January to February 2021.

Inter-parental conflict’s persistent effects on adolescent psychological distress, adjustment issues, and suicidal ideation during the COVID-19 lockdown

Iqra Mushtaque; Muhammad Rizwan; Mazhar Abbas (et al.)

Published: December 2021   Journal: OMEGA - Journal of Death and Dying
The current study sought to ascertain the impact of inter-parent conflicts on teenage psychological distress, social and academic adjustment and examine the suicide ideation during the COVID-19. The results found to be alarming as 22% of the individuals displayed suicidal tendencies, with 9% having attempted suicide once, 4.6% having tried suicide twice, and 11% stating that they were likely to do so again. Therefore, the media and the government might host awareness programs and counseling initiatives to promote mental health and prevent suicidal behavior. Moreover, parents may be educated on community level, about the effect of inter-parental arguments on the mental health of their children.
Child suicide rates during the COVID-19 pandemic in England

David Odd; Tom Williams; Louis Appleby (et al.)

Published: December 2021   Journal: Journal of Affective Disorders Reports

There is concern about the impact of COVID-19, and the control measures to prevent the spread, on children's mental health. The aim of this work was to identify if there had been a rise of childhood suicide during the COVID pandemic. Using data from England's National Child Mortality Database (NCMD) the characteristics and rates of children dying of suicide between April and December 2020 were compared with those in 2019. In a subset (1st January to 17th May 2020) further characteristics and possible contributing factors were obtained.

The effect of cyberbullying, abuse, and screen time on non-suicidal self-injury among adolescents during the pandemic: a perspective from the mediating role of stress

Tjhin Wiguna; Kusuma Minayati; Fransiska Kaligis (et al.)

Published: November 2021   Journal: Frontiers in Psychiatry
Adolescence is often a period of turmoil. The COVID-19 pandemic has increased adolescents' difficulty due to mental health consequences that may affect their developmental milestones. This study constructed and empirically tested a theoretical model of three predictive factors (cyberbullying, abuse, and screen time) and stress as the mediating factor in adolescent non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI). Structural equation model (SEM) analysis was applied to investigate stress as a mediating factor in the relationship between adolescent NSSI and cyberbullying, abuse, and screen time. This cross-sectional study used a “crowdsourcing” sample collection method to recruit 464 adolescents aged 11–17 years who were administered a questionnaire comprising scales on cyberbullying, abuse, screen time, stress, and NSSI. All scales had construct reliabilities ranging from 0.759 to 0.958. SEM statistical analysis was performed using Lisrel version 8.8 (Scientific Software International, USA) for Windows (Microsoft Corporation, Redmond, WA, USA). The mean (± SD) age of the cohort was 14.61 ± 1.65 years, and consisted of 66.7% females. Secondary high school was the highest educational background (58%).
Temporal trends in suicide attempts among children in the decade before and during the COVID-19 pandemic in Paris, France

Anthony Cousien; Eric Acquaviva; Solen Kernéis (et al.)

Published: October 2021   Journal: JAMA Network Open

Recent studies have reported a deterioration in children’s mental health since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, with an increase in anxiety and mood disorders. Rates of suicide ideation and suicide attempts among children were also higher when COVID-19–related stressors were heightened in 2020. This study aimed to better assess temporal trends in suicide attempts among children while adjusting for annual and seasonal fluctuations. It conducted a cross-sectional study of surveillance data collected over the past 10 years at the Robert Debré Hospital in Paris, France, which is one of the largest pediatric centers in Europe.

Young people’s mental health is finally getting the attention it needs
Published: October 2021   Journal: Nature

Worldwide, at least 13% of people between the ages of 10 and 19 live with a diagnosed mental-health disorder, according to the latest State of the World’s Children report, published this week by the United Nations children’s charity UNICEF. It’s the first time in the organization’s history that this flagship report has tackled the challenges in and opportunities for preventing and treating mental-health problems among young people. It reveals that adolescent mental health is highly complex, understudied — and underfunded. These findings are echoed in a parallel collection of review articles published this week in a number of Springer Nature journals. Anxiety and depression constitute more than 40% of mental-health disorders among young people (those aged 10–19). UNICEF also reports that, worldwide, suicide is the fourth most-common cause of death (after road injuries, tuberculosis and interpersonal violence) among adolescents (aged 15–19). In eastern Europe and central Asia, suicide is the leading cause of death for young people in that age group — and it’s the second-highest cause in western Europe and North America.

Emergency department encounters among youth with suicidal thoughts or behaviors during the COVID-19 pandemic

Kathryn K. Ridout; Mubarika Alavi; Samuel J. Ridout (et al.)

Published: September 2021   Journal: JAMA Psychiatry

Population-level reports of suicide-related emergency department (ED) encounters among youth during the COVID-19 pandemic are lacking, along with youth characteristics and preexisting psychiatric service use. This study aims to characterize population-level and relative change in suicide-related ED encounters among youth during the COVID-19 pandemic compared with 2019. This cross-sectional study evaluated ED encounters in 2019 and 2020 at Kaiser Permanente Northern California—a large, integrated, community-based health system. Youth aged 5 to 17 years who presented to the ED with suicidal thoughts or behaviors were included.

Peer connectedness and pre-existing social reward processing predicts U.S. adolescent girls’ suicidal ideation during COVID-19

Emily A. Hutchinson; Stefanie L. Sequeira; Jennifer S. Silk (et al.)

Published: August 2021   Journal: Journal of Research on Adolescence
There is major concern about the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on adolescent suicidal ideation (SI) and peer relationships. This study investigated (1) rates of SI and (2) the extent to which peer connectedness and pre-existing neural activation to social reward predicted SI during the initial stay-at-home orders of the pandemic (April–May 2020) in a longitudinal sample of adolescent girls (N = 93; Mage = 15.06; 69% White non-Hispanic). Daily diary and fMRI methods were used to assess peer connectedness and neural activation to social reward, respectively. Nearly 40% of girls endorsed SI during the initial stay-at-home orders. Greater peer connectedness and neural responsivity to anticipated social reward were associated with a reduced odds of SI during the pandemic among girls.
16 - 30 of 50

UNICEF Innocenti's Children and COVID-19 Library is a database collecting research from around the world on COVID-19 and its impacts on children and adolescents.


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