Using psychoneuroimmunity against COVID-19

Brain Behav Immun. 2020 Jul;87:4-5. doi: 10.1016/j.bbi.2020.03.025. Epub 2020 Mar 29.


The worldwide outbreak of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) raises concerns of widespread panic and anxiety in individuals subjected to the real or perceived threat of the virus. Compared to general populations, patients who are institutionalized in a closed unit are also very vulnerable to COVID-19 infection and complications. This crisis touched on difficult issues of not only psychiatric care and ethics, but also psychological impacts to psychiatric care givers. In this Viewpoint, we address both physical and biopsychosocial aspects of this infection, as well as the psychoneuroimmunity of preventive strategies of healthy lifestyle, regular exercise, balanced nutrition, quality sleep and a strong connection with people. Social distancing and wearing masks might help us from pathogen exposure, yet such these measures also prevent us from expressing compassion and friendliness. Therefore, all forms of psychological support should be routinely implemented not only to consider psychological resilience but also to enhance psychoneuroimmunity against COVID-19.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Betacoronavirus
  • COVID-19
  • Coronavirus Infections / epidemiology
  • Coronavirus Infections / prevention & control
  • Coronavirus Infections / psychology*
  • Diet, Healthy
  • Exercise
  • Healthy Lifestyle
  • Humans
  • Masks
  • Mental Disorders / epidemiology
  • Mental Disorders / psychology*
  • Pandemics / prevention & control
  • Pneumonia, Viral / epidemiology
  • Pneumonia, Viral / prevention & control
  • Pneumonia, Viral / psychology*
  • Psychoneuroimmunology*
  • Resilience, Psychological
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Sleep
  • Social Behavior
  • Social Support
  • Stress, Psychological / epidemiology
  • Stress, Psychological / psychology*