BackgroundThe COVID-19 pandemic has led governments worldwide to implement unprecedented response strategies. While crucial to limiting the spread of the virus, “social distancing” may lead to severe psychological consequences, especially in lonely individuals.MethodsWe used cross-sectional and longitudinal designs to investigate the links between loneliness, anxiety, and depression symptoms and COVID-19 risk perception and affective response in young adults who implemented social distancing during the first 2 weeks of the state of epidemic threat in Poland.ResultsLoneliness was correlated with ADS and with affective response to COVID-19’s threat to health. However, increased worry about the social isolation and heightened risk perception for financial problems was observed in lonelier individuals. The cross-lagged influence of the initial affective response to COVID-19 on subsequent levels of loneliness was also found.ConclusionThe reciprocal connections between loneliness and COVID-19 response may be of crucial importance for ADS during the COVID-19 crisis.
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DOI 10.3389/fpsyg.2020.579181
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