Self-Report Measurement of Depression, Anxiety, and Stress Caused by COVID-19 Pandemic in Senior Undergraduate Dental Students
Keywords:COVID-19, Mental Health, Dental Students, Depression, Anxiety
Objective: To evaluate the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on senior undergraduate dental students' psychological health by measuring depression, anxiety, and stress levels. Material and Methods: 259 fifth-year dental students participated in this study, including 156 females (60.2%) and 103 males (39.8%), aged 20–25. An online-based questionnaire was created, including a few questions about learning, post-graduation challenges, and fear of the virus exposure. Students were asked to define their acute anxiety state by visual facial anxiety scale (VFAS) and depression, anxiety, and stress levels by The Depression, Anxiety and Stress Scale (DASS-42). All data were analyzed statistically. Results: Participants stated online learning platforms were insufficient for clinical competence (91.5%), the COVID-19 pandemic changed post-graduation career perspectives (29.3%), and they feared exposure to COVID-19 while performing their profession (82.6%). Acute anxiety levels of the students were recorded as 95.4% mild to highest. Mild to extremely severe depression, anxiety, and stress scores of the participants were 82.1%, 79.6%, and 72.9%, respectively. Higher mean values for all depression, anxiety, and stress parameters were obtained in females than males (p<0.05). Conclusion: Data showed that the psychological health of senior undergraduate dental students had been affected adversely due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
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