When time falls apart: The public health implications of distorted time perception in the age of COVID-19

Psychol Trauma. 2020 Aug;12(S1):S63-S65. doi: 10.1037/tra0000756. Epub 2020 Jun 11.


Collective trauma, like the COVID-19 pandemic, can dramatically alter how we perceive time and view our futures. Indeed, the pandemic has challenged us to cope with an ambiguous, invisible threat that has changed our way of life and made our futures, both near and far, less certain. In this commentary, we review existing literature on time perception in the context of stress and trauma and discuss its implications for mental health and well-being. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2020 APA, all rights reserved).

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological / physiology*
  • COVID-19
  • Coronavirus Infections / psychology*
  • Humans
  • Pandemics*
  • Pneumonia, Viral / psychology*
  • Psychological Trauma / physiopathology*
  • Public Health*
  • Time Perception / physiology*