Stress of Invisible Information Threats and its Consequences

111

Abstract

Relevance. In recent years, studies have accumulated a lot of factual material on the psychological consequences of stress caused by exposure to aggressive environmental factors, including the COVID–19 virus threat factor. In this connection, the task of generalizing and rethinking the role of information threats in the development of psychopathological symptoms in the general population becomes obvious. Goal. The work is devoted to the theoretical and empirical analysis of the psychological consequences of experiencing invisible information threats (viral and radiation threats, the threat of a life–threatening disease, a terrorist threat to indirect victims, emotional violence). Materials and methods: the total sample size for assessing the experience of the COVID–19 virus threat is 712 respondents interviewed in two time periods (from April to May 2020, from October 2021 to May 2022). Empirical data of a cross–cultural project on the study of PTSD in the liquidators of the Chernobyl accident 1992–1994 are also used. laboratories of psychology of post–traumatic stress of the IP RAS under the leadership of N.V. Tarabrina and the psychophysiological laboratory of Harvard Medical School (USA), headed by Professor R. Pitman. To assess the experience of a terrorist threat, empirical data from a 2007 dissertation study Bykhovets Yu.V. Test battery: a questionnaire on the experience of a viral threat, SCL–90–R, PCL–5, SHVS–10, a questionnaire on the prescription and intensity of the disease COVID–19 are used. Results. The dynamics of the psychological state of the population during the COVID–19 pandemic (2020 - 2022) is described. A comparative analysis of the severity of psychopathological symptoms in the liquidators of the Chernobyl accident, indirect victims of terrorist attacks and COVID–19 respondents who were ill/not ill is presented. A comparative analysis of the severity of delayed symptoms, in particular post–traumatic stress disorder, showed that 19,7 % of the liquidators of the Chernobyl accident were diagnosed with PTSD, 24 % of indirect victims of terrorist attacks and 7,25% of people who had Covid–19. Conclusions. According to the study, it can be concluded that the psychological consequences of a collision with invisible information threats are represented by a wide range of negative affectivity, which proves the possibility of attributing these stressors to high–intensity stressors.

General Information

Keywords: invisible information threats, radiation, indirect victims, terrorist attack, viral threat, COVID–19, intense stress, psychopathological signs, PTSD

Journal rubric: Empirical Researches

Article type: scientific article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.17759/cpp.2023310307

Funding. The study was carried out in accordance with the State Task of the Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation No. 0138-2023-0005

Acknowledgements. The author expresses gratitude to Alexandra Buzina for her help in preparing the data.

Received: 11.08.2023

Accepted:

For citation: Bykhovets J.V. Stress of Invisible Information Threats and its Consequences. Konsul'tativnaya psikhologiya i psikhoterapiya = Counseling Psychology and Psychotherapy, 2023. Vol. 31, no. 3, pp. 132–166. DOI: 10.17759/cpp.2023310307. (In Russ., аbstr. in Engl.)

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Information About the Authors

Julia V. Bykhovets, PhD in Psychology, Senior Researcher, Laboratory of Psychology of Development of the Subject in Normal and Post-Traumatic States, the Institute of Psychology of the Russian Academy of Sciences (IP RAS), Moscow, Russia, ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-0163-4334, e-mail: bykhovets@yandex.ru

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