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See detailThe impact of COVID-19 lockdown stringency on loneliness in five European countries
Caro, Juan Carlos; Clark, Andrew; d'Ambrosio, Conchita UL et al

in Social Science and Medicine (2022)

Rationale: The coronavirus pandemic has forced governments to implement a variety of different dynamic lockdown-stringency strategies in the last two years. Extensive lockdown periods could have potential ... [more ▼]

Rationale: The coronavirus pandemic has forced governments to implement a variety of different dynamic lockdown-stringency strategies in the last two years. Extensive lockdown periods could have potential unintended consequences on mental health, at least for at-risk groups. Objective: We present novel evidence on the heterogeneous direct and indirect effects of lockdown-stringency measures on individuals’ perception of social isolation (i.e. loneliness) using panel data from five European countries (Germany, France, Spain, Italy and Sweden), which tracks changes in both in-person and remote social interactions between May 2020 and March 2021. Method: We combine data from the COME-HERE panel survey (University of Luxembourg) and the Oxford COVID-19 Government Response Tracker (OxCGRT). We implement a dynamic mixture model in order to estimate the loneliness sub-population classes based on the severity of loneliness, as well as the evolution of social interactions. Results: While loneliness is remarkably persistent over time, we find substantial heterogeneity across individuals, identifying four latent groups by loneliness severity. Group membership probability varies with age, gender, education and cohabitation status. Moreover, we note significant differences in the impact of social interactions on loneliness by degree of severity. Older people are less likely to feel lonely, but were more affected by lockdown measures, partly due to a reduction in face-to-face interactions. On the contrary, the younger, especially those living alone, report high levels of loneliness that are largely unaffected by changes in the pandemic after lockdown measures were initially implemented. Conclusions: Understanding the heterogeneity in loneliness is key for the identification of at-risk populations that can be severely affected by extended lockdown measures. As part of public-health crisis-response systems, it is critical to develop support measures for older individuals living alone, as well as promoting continuous remote communication for individuals more likely to experience high levels of loneliness. [less ▲]

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See detail“What's a normal weight?” – Origin and receiving country influences on weight-status assessment among 1.5 and 2nd generation immigrant adolescents in Europe
Kern, Matthias Robert UL; Heinz, Andreas UL; Stevens, Gonneke W.J.M. et al

in Social Science and Medicine (2020)

Many adolescents struggle with adequately assessing their weight-status, often leading to unnecessary weight-related interventions or preventing necessary ones. The prevalence of weight-status over- and ... [more ▼]

Many adolescents struggle with adequately assessing their weight-status, often leading to unnecessary weight-related interventions or preventing necessary ones. The prevalence of weight-status over- and underestimation differs considerably cross-nationally, suggesting that individual weight-status assessment is informed by cross-nationally differing standards of evaluation. For adolescents with a migration background, this brings up the possibility of a simultaneous influence of origin- and receiving country standards. The current study examines the magnitude of both influences using data from the 2014 Health Behaviour in School-Aged Children study. The cross-national design of the study enabled us to aggregate weight-evaluation standards for 41, primarily European, countries. Subsequently, we identified a sample of 8 124 adolescents with a migration background whose origin as well as receiving country participated in the study. Among those adolescents, we assessed the effects of origin and receiving country weight-evaluation standards using cross-classified multilevel regression analyses. Descriptive analyses revealed considerable differences in weight-evaluation standards between the countries. Regression analyses showed that both origin- and receiving country weight-evaluation standards were significantly associated cross-sectionally with weight-status assessment among the immigrant adolescents, with a stronger impact of receiving country standards. Results illustrate the context-sensitivity of adolescent weight-status assessment and reinforce the theoretical notion that immigrant adolescent development is not only informed by factors pertaining to their receiving country but also, albeit to a lesser extent, by those pertaining to their origin country. [less ▲]

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See detailWorking Time Mismatches and Self-Assessed Health of Married Couples: Evidence from Germany
Lepinteur, Anthony UL

in Social Science and Medicine (2019)

Underemployment and overemployment are widespread in developed countries and have detrimental consequences on health. This article tackles the question of the relationship between health and own, spousal ... [more ▼]

Underemployment and overemployment are widespread in developed countries and have detrimental consequences on health. This article tackles the question of the relationship between health and own, spousal and cross working time mismatches in bi-active couples. Using 83,000 observations from the German SOEP (1997–2012) I demonstrate that self-assessed health is reduced in case of overemployment and underemployment. I find that living with an overemployed partner is negatively correlated with own health. However, I show that the effect of overemployment is lower for those who live with an overemployed partner. This positive cross-effect is consistent with the existence of a comparison norm effect within household. Those results are robust to a battery of sensitivity checks and mostly transit via mental health. This article concludes that overemployment does not only affect the overemployed workers but also their partner and not accounting for such spillovers leads to an underestimation of the total health costs of overemployment. [less ▲]

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See detailInternational Parental Migration and the Psychological Well-being of Children in Ghana, Nigeria, and Angola
Mazzucato, Valentina; Cebotari, Victor UL; Veale, Angela et al

in Social Science and Medicine (2015), 132(May), 215224

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