In this study, we set out to investigate adolescents’ levels of perceived well-being and to map how they went about caring for their well-being during the COVID-19 syndemic. Participants were 229 Italian adolescent high school students (48.9% males, mean age = 16.64). The research design was based on an exploratory, parallel, mixed-method approach. A multi-method, student-centered, computer-assisted, semi-structured online interview was used as the data gathering tool, including both a standardized quantitative questionnaire on perceived well-being and an open-ended question about how adolescents were taking charge of their well-being during the COVID-19 health emergency. Main findings reveal general low levels of perceived well-being during the syndemic, especially in girls and in older adolescents. Higher levels of well-being are associated with more affiliative strategies (we-ness/togetherness) whereas low levels of well-being are linked with more individualistic strategies (I-ness/separatedness) in facing the health emergency. These findings identify access to social support as a strategy for coping with situational stress and raise reflection on the importance of balancing the need for physical distancing to protect from infection, and the need for social closeness to maintain good mental health.

Fuente: Scientific Reports

Published: 17 January 2023