“People’s perceptions about themselves are often more potent in influencing their emotional well-being than the corresponding objective aspects,” says Yang, a psychology expert.
He adds that the findings of the study, published in Psychiatry Research, could inform public policy makers and mental health authorities who seek to protect or boost psychological well-being during a major outbreak such as COVID-19.
“Resources for mental health care should be made more available to groups that are most psychologically vulnerable during an epidemic. Specific policies, programs, and interventions need to be developed to help foster positive family relationships during an extended lockdown. Also, efforts that increase people’s understanding of how to effectively prevent infection can help boost their sense of control and, consequently, their psychological health,” says Yang.