Major Stress-Related Symptoms During the Lockdown: A Study by the Italian Society of Psychophysiology and Cognitive Neuroscience

Sara Invitto, Daniele Romano, Francesca Garbarini, Valentina Bruno, Cosimo Urgesi, Giuseppe Curcio, Alberto Grasso, Maria Concetta Pellicciari, Giacomo Kock, Viviana Betti, Mirta Fiorio, Emiliano Ricciardi, Marina de Tommaso, Massimiliano Valeriani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The clinical effects of the Covid-19 pandemic are now the subject of numerous studies worldwide. But what are the effects of the quarantine imposed by the states that implemented the measures of lockdown? The present research aims to explore, in a preliminary way, the major stress-related symptoms during the lockdown, due to Covid-19, in the Italian population. Subjects were asked to fill out a survey, that traced a line identifying the most relevant psychophysiological symptoms that took into account factors such as perceived stress, body perception, perceived pain, quality of sleep, perceptive variations (i.e., olfactory, gustatory, visual, acoustic, and haptic perception). A network approach formulating a hypothesis-generating exploratory analysis was adopted. Main results of the network analysis showed that the beliefs of having had the Covid-19 was related to individual variables (i.e., gender, working in presence, sleep quality, anxiety symptoms), while the familiarity of Covid-19 disease was related to contextual factors (e.g., number of recorded cases in the Region, working in presence). The self-perception of olfactory and perceptive alterations highlighted a great sensorial cross-modality, additionally, the olfactory impairment was related to the belief of having had the Covid-19. Compared to general network data, BAI, perceived stress, anxiety and chronic pain were in relation to daily sleep disturbance. Main study's results show how the management of the Covid-19 stressful representation, in its cognitive aspects, can modulate the psychophysiological responses.

Original languageEnglish
Article number636089
JournalFrontiers in Public Health
Publication statusPublished - Mar 26 2021


  • anxiety symptoms
  • Covid-19
  • lockdown
  • olfactory perception
  • pain
  • sleep habits
  • stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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