University of Oulu

Mourelatos, E. How personality affects reaction. A mental health behavioral insight review during the Pandemic. Curr Psychol 42, 8644–8665 (2023).

How personality affects reaction : a mental health behavioral insight review during the Pandemic

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Author: Mourelatos, Evangelos1,2
Organizations: 1Department of Economics, Oulu Business School, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
2Department of Economics, University of Patras, Patras, Greece
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 1.3 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Springer Nature, 2021
Publish Date: 2022-03-03


The fear caused by the Covid-19 pandemic is changing our psychology and behavior. This ongoing negative event, imposing restrictions such as home isolation and social distancing, can result in heightened anxiety, depression and a sense of loneliness, with immediate effects on mental health. This study investigates adolescents’ reaction to the pandemic, by analyzing the behavioral mental health trends of depression, anxiety and sense of loneliness, in relation to personality traits. After controlling for demographics and family background, our results reveal strong relationships between several personality traits and psychological health indicators, during the pandemic in Greece. A total of 419 secondary school students (aged 12–18) were administered the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory for Children (STAIC), the Child Depression Inventory (CDI), the Big Five Inventory for measuring personality (BFI) and the Children’s Loneliness Questionnaire (CLS) during two time periods within pandemic. Overall, it appears that depression increased significantly in line with the escalation of the pandemic, while anxiety decreased, with the strongest predictors being the personality variables of extraversion, neuroticism and openness. Surprisingly, the study also revealed that the level of extraversion has a positive effect on changes in anxiety, while a negative one on changes in depression. On the other hand, neuroticism and openness seem to negatively correlate with anxiety changes and positively with depression changes. These findings highlight the importance of considering these variables in addressing individuals’ mental health behavior during the Covid-19 pandemic and elucidate the literature by offering a deeper understanding of the strong relationship between personality, depression and anxiety.

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Series: Current psychology
ISSN: 1046-1310
ISSN-E: 1936-4733
ISSN-L: 1046-1310
Volume: 42
Issue: 10
Pages: 8644 - 8665
DOI: 10.1007/s12144-021-02425-9
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 515 Psychology
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