eISSN: 2720-5371
ISSN: 1230-2813
Advances in Psychiatry and Neurology/Postępy Psychiatrii i Neurologii
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vol. 31
Original article

Depression among young adults – risks and protective factors in the COVID-19 pandemic

Magdalena Gawrych
Ewelina Cichoń
2, 3
Andrzej Kiejna
2, 3

Institute of Psychology, The Maria Grzegorzewska University, Warsaw, Poland
Institute of Psychology, WSB University in Torun, Poland
Collegium of Psychological Studies, University of Lower Silesia, Wrocław, Poland
Adv Psychiatry Neurol 2022; 31 (2): 52-61
Online publish date: 2022/07/20
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The present study aimed to assess the depression symptoms and predictors of depression in Polish young adults during online learning in the COVID-19 pandemic.

Material and methods
The online questionnaire, including the Kutcher Adolescent Depression Scale, was distributed to young Poles through school principals. The final sample consisted of 1,500 students between the ages of 18 and 23 attending secondary schools. Multi­variable logistic regression assessed the relationships between sociodemographic factors, pandemic stressors, coping behaviours and depressive symptoms.

56% of young Polish adults are experiencing significant depressive symptoms (95% CI: 1.82-13.96). Social isolation was recognized as the main stressor. Many significant predictors of depression were captured. Being female, living in the countryside, talking to parents, and participating in sports and hobbies are found to be protective factors. The following sociodemographic factors are important predictors of depression in young adults: being male, attending a secondary school, living in a large city. Expe­riencing stress due to pandemic and online learning is one of the risk factors for depression.

The majority of young Poles met the criteria for depressive disorders. The initial findings of the presented study not only highlight the need to address mental health consequences for young people during online learning, but also provide the grounds for the development of post-pandemic interventions.


depression, young adults, online learning, COVID-19, mental health

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