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The role of spreading the coronavirus infection (COVID-19) in developing stress and chronic fatigue in the working population

ISSN 2223-6775 Ukrainian journal of occupational health Vol.16, No 3, 2020

The role of spreading the coronavirus infection (COVID-19) in developing stress and chronic fatigue in the working population

Kalnish V.V.

 

https://doi.org/10.33573/ujoh2020.03.173

SI “Kundiiev Institute of Occupational Health of the National Academy of Medical Sciences of Ukraine”, Kiev

 

Full article (PDF), UKR

Introduction.   Currently, a situation has developed in the world caused by spreading COVID-19, which gives a powerful impulse to increasing emotional stress in the population leading to raising the morbidity. The complexity of the process concerned, especially in view of the interaction with its emotional component, is now not fully understood and requires an in-depth analysis.

The purpose of this work was to identify causes and peculiarities of spreading the state of emotional “infection” and developing chronic fatigue in the working population in conditions of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.

Methods and materials of the study. There have been used databases https://mrc-ide.github.io/covid19estimates and https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/map.html.

Results and discussion. The analysis of the number of deaths after infection with COVID-19 in Sweden, the UK and Germany in April and May 2020 was carried out. It has been shown that the course of the epidemic is oscillatory with a period close to the duration of a week, which can be explained by the availability of continuous processes in the population.

When analyzing the reasons for stressing the population, in addition to medical ones, economical problems should be mentioned, caused by the current epidemic situation. These problems have a detrimental effect not only on the country's economy, but also on the development of stressful reactions in people, the consequence of which is the deterioration of the mental health of workers. Rising unemployment, increased work stress, lower wages and other factors contribute to an increase in the frequency of mood disorders, formation of anxiety, depression, dysthymia, as well as the increase in the risk of damage to the cardiovascular and other body systems. Other, no less important for Ukraine, are military-political reasons that sharply affect various aspects of people's life, manifesting themselves from different sides of the demarcation line.

Conclusions. 1.The intensity of infection of the working population with COVID-19 depends on the severity of quarantine measures and does not depend on the density of the country's population, characterizing the substrate on which the spread of this process is forming. The course of the epidemic has an oscillatory character with a period close to seven days, which can be explained by the availability of persistent autowave processes of virus infection.

  1. The spread of the virus and the economic consequences of quarantine against the background of many years of hostilities in the country are causing the spread of emotional "infection" associated not only with the consequences of this disease, but also with economic problems for most workers. As a result of the "collision" of these two processes, a kind of "vicious circle" is forming, resulting in the increase of stress, accompanied in turn by the formation of chronic fatigue.
  2. The substrate on which physical infection with coronavirus and informational emotional “infection” is forming is the “loose excitable environment” - a community of the working people. The "looseness" and heterogeneity of this environment, on the one hand, is associated with the physical transmission of the viral infection, and on the other, with economic difficulties that cause emotional "infection" due to the economic "power" and living conditions of each person. The specificity of the interaction of these material and information processes is that the encountered waves can pass through one another, thereby strengthening each other and stimulating the development of chronic fatigue in the working population.
  3. The role of strong and weak informational links in the formation of emotional "infection" is shown, since in the presence of multiple weak links, any disseminated information will get to more people and cover a longer social distance than the presence of strong ones, which leads to the expansion of the boundaries of chronic fatigue development. Taking into account the peculiarities of the spread of emotional "infection" will make it possible to develop measures to stop it.

Key words: spread of COVID-19, emotional “infection”, stress, chronic fatigue.

 

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