Life Alterations and Stress During the COVID-19 Pandemic in Japan: Two-Time Comparison
Junko Okuyama*1,*2,, Shuji Seto*2,*3, Yu Fukuda*4, Kiyoshi Ito*2,*3, Fumihiko Imamura*2,*3, Shunichi Funakoshi*5, and Shin-Ichi Izumi*1
*1Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Tohoku University Graduate School of Medicine
2-1 Seiryo-machi, Aoba-ku, Sendai, Miyagi 980-8575, Japan
*2Core Research Cluster of Disaster Science, Tohoku University, Miyagi, Japan
*3International Research Institute of Disaster Science (IRIDeS), Tohoku University, Miyagi, Japan
*4Faculty of Letters, Notre Dame Seishin University, Okayama, Japan
*5Miyagi Psychiatric Center, Miyagi, Japan
No other infectious disease that has had a long-lasting impact on humanity in recent times has caused as much hardship as the coronavirus disease, COVID-19. While several cross-sectional surveys have reported the effects of the pandemic on daily life, there have been very few longitudinal reports from Japan. Therefore, we conducted web-based questionnaire surveys 131 and 610 days after the first case of COVID-19 infection was reported in Japan. There were 244 and 220 participants in the first and second surveys, respectively. The percentage of participants who felt stressed increased from 76 to 97% from the first to the second survey, while the frequency of going out and playing sports/exercising did not change. Regarding the problems faced due to COVID-19, the number of people who mentioned the word “stress” increased significantly in the second survey. The changes in perceived stress under difficult circumstances over a period of time can aid prediction and support during the COVID-19 pandemic in the future.
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