General Stress Among Young Adults with Asthma During the COVID-19 Pandemic

J Allergy Clin Immunol Pract. 2022 Jan;10(1):108-115. doi: 10.1016/j.jaip.2021.10.069. Epub 2021 Nov 14.


Background: The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has profoundly affected the lives of the global population.

Objective: To explore anxiety and stress in relation to COVID-19 among young adults, and the potential influence of asthma and allergic rhinitis.

Methods: This cross-sectional study included 1644 participants from the population-based birth cohort BAMSE (Swedish abbreviation for Children, Allergy, Milieu, Stockholm, Epidemiology), participating in a follow-up at age 24 years and a COVID-19 follow-up conducted in August-November 2020 (mean age, 25.3 years). Anxiety and concern related to COVID-19 were analyzed as general anxiety, concern of own health and health of family members, and contact with online health care providers due to concern about COVID-19. Stress was measured with the perceived stress scale.

Results: Around half the participants reported increased anxiety due to COVID-19, and this was more common among females (57.0%, compared with 42.6% in males; P < .001). Young adults with asthma reported more concern about their own health (adjusted odds ratio, 1.50; 95% CI, 1.12-2.02) and perceived stress (adjusted regression coefficient [adjusted β], 1.49; 95% CI, 0.52-2.45) compared with peers without asthma, and this was more pronounced among females and those with uncontrolled asthma. Symptoms of allergic rhinitis were not associated with increased concern or anxiety in relation to COVID-19.

Conclusions: Young adults with asthma experience more COVID-19-related health concerns, compared with those without asthma, especially females and participants with uncontrolled asthma This needs to be considered in the care of young people with asthma.

Keywords: Anxiety; Asthma; COVID-19; Health concerns; Percieved stress; Rhinitis.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Anxiety
  • Asthma* / epidemiology
  • Birth Cohort
  • COVID-19*
  • Child
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Pandemics
  • Rhinitis, Allergic*
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Young Adult