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The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has significantly increased depression rates, particularly in emerging adults. The aim of this study was to examine longitudinal changes in depression risk before and during COVID-19 in a cohort of emerging adults in the U.S. and to determine whether prior drinking or sleep habits could predict the severity of depressive symptoms during the pandemic.
Participants were 525 emerging adults from the National Consortium on Alcohol and NeuroDevelopment in Adolescence (NCANDA), a five-site community sample including moderate-to-heavy drinkers. Poisson mixed-effect models evaluated changes in the Center for Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale (CES-D-10) from before to during COVID-19, also testing for sex and age interactions. Additional analyses examined whether alcohol use frequency or sleep duration measured in the last pre-COVID assessment predicted pandemic-related increase in depressive symptoms.
The prevalence of risk for clinical depression tripled due to a substantial and sustained increase in depressive symptoms during COVID-19 relative to pre-COVID years. Effects were strongest for younger women. Frequent alcohol use and short sleep duration during the closest pre-COVID visit predicted a greater increase in COVID-19 depressive symptoms.
The sharp increase in depression risk among emerging adults heralds a public health crisis with alarming implications for their social and emotional functioning as this generation matures. In addition to the heightened risk for younger women, the role of alcohol use and sleep behavior should be tracked through preventive care aiming to mitigate this looming mental health crisis.
The present study investigated the effect of target stimulus
probability on the P3 component of the respiratory-related evoked
potential (RREP). A single respiratory stimulus paradigm was
employed where normal breaths served as standard stimuli and
occluded breaths presented at various probability levels served
as target stimuli. EEG was recorded from 29 channels in young
adults in two conditions. In Condition 1, occlusions were presented
at target probabilities of 0.5, 0.33, 0.25, 0.2, 0.1, and 0.05,
that is, every 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 10th, and 20th breath. Order
of target probability presentation varied randomly. Condition
2 used the same target probabilities, but held breathing rate
constant by using a paced respiration task. Results indicated
that P3 amplitude was significantly affected by stimulus
probability, such that the component showed an inverse relationship
with probability. This effect was similar between conditions.
However, P3 amplitude reduced and latency increased when the
secondary task of paced respiration was introduced. These data
suggest that models developed to describe the effect of stimulus
probability on the amplitude of visual and auditory P3 components
are applicable to the respiratory somatosensory modality.
This study investigated the relationship between
resistive load magnitude, load magnitude estimation, and
the respiratory-related evoked potential. In Part 1, 10
healthy subjects estimated the magnitude of five inspiratory
resistive loads. Two subjects were shown to have a markedly
reduced slope of the magnitude estimation-resistive load
relationship and were suggested to be “poor perceivers”
of respiratory stimuli. In Part 2, evoked potentials were
recorded from the same 10 subjects using the same resistive
loads as Part 1. A log-log plot of the group averaged P1
amplitudes showed a linear relationship with resistive
load. Aberrant P3 components were seen in the 2 poor perceiving
subjects and one of the 2 showed no late response. In the
other 8 subjects, P3 varied as a function of resistive
load, being augmented to larger loads. These results provide
evidence that P3 may be a key index of the perception of
respiratory sensitivity and effort.
The present study assessed the effects of occlusion
duration and attention on components of the respiratory-related
evoked potential (RREP). Twenty-nine channel evoked potential
recordings were obtained from 12 young adults exposed to
a pseudorandom sequence of 100-, 200-, 400-, and 800-ms
inspiratory occlusions, under attend and ignore conditions.
Results demonstrated that the duration of an inspiratory
occlusion does not affect RREP components systematically,
highlighting the importance of the onset of the occlusion
in producing the cortical responses. Attention resulted
in augmentation of the N1, P2, and P3 components but did
not affect the early latency Nf and P1 components. P1,
N1, and P3 occurred with shorter latencies in the attend
condition. One subject with poor duration estimation ability
displayed substantially delayed P3 latency. This result
highlights the relationship between P3 and perception of
respiratory somatosensory information.
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