MENTAL HEALTH ASSESSMENT AMONG DENTAL PROFESSIONALS DURING COVID-19 PANDEMIC IN GUJARAT, INDIA
Keywords:Coronavirus, dentists, fear, mental health, pandemic
Background: The novel Coronavirus-2 (SARS- Cov-2) is an easily transmissible disease and the fear of contracting COVID-19 is prevalent among the dentists leading to negative psychological effect. Healthcare professionals, particularly dentists, are at a higher risk of contracting COVID-19, because of working in close proximity with the infected patients as well as exposure to aerosol generating procedures. The purpose of this study was to see how COVID-19 fear affected the mental health of dental practitioners in Gujarat, India.
Materials and method: This study was conducted using 3 standardized scales to assess fear of contracting COVID-19 and its association with developing stress and depression amongst the dental professionals. The survey was conducted virtually on the google forms platform. 767 dentists participated in this study. Correlation was done using Pearson correlation between the socio-demographic factors and fear of COVID-19 scale, perceived stress scale and patient health questionnaire-9 scale to assess the mental health.
Results: The results showed that the fear of contracting COVID-19, associated stress and depression was more prevalent amongst the individuals belonging to a younger age group having fewer years of work experience involving BDS graduates, consultants and private practitioners.
Conclusion: A positive correlation was observed between the fear of COVID-19 and developing stress and depressive symptoms leading to negative mental health outcomes among the dental professionals of Gujarat, India.
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