Awareness Survey of 18-Year-Olds – Coronavirus and StressResults of 35th installment announced
The 35th installment of the Awareness Survey of 18-Year-Olds, launched by The Nippon Foundation in October 2018, was carried out from February 12 to 16 on the subject of “Coronavirus and Stress.” When asked about an increased sense of confinement caused by the coronavirus, 59% replied that they sensed that people around them felt confined, and 50% felt so themselves. With regard to things experienced over the previous month, 37% cited a “continued sense of uneasiness and irritation” and 34% noted “continued fatigue.” The survey was conducted soon after the government’s state of emergency was extended in 10 of the originally covered 11 prefectures and clearly shows a strong feeling of stress among young people, with almost half of respondents saying they could not spend their leisure time as they wished, and of those 91% reporting a feeling of stress.
Additionally, 23% replied that the pandemic has had a negative effect on their pursuit of higher education or employment, and 18% reported a negative effect on family and personal incomes, showing that the coronavirus is negatively affecting young people’s lives in concrete ways.
- From the 13th survey, the number of respondents, comprising men and women aged 17 to 19, has been increased to 1,000 from 800. (With the exception of the 20th installment, “Awareness Survey of Society and Country,” all surveys cover respondents in Japan only.)
- In the information below, differences between total amounts and simple sums are due to rounding.
Survey 35. Coronavirus and Stress (Results announced on March 25, 2021)
Finding: 58.7% of respondents sensed that people around them were feeling a sense of confinement as a result of the coronavirus. (n = 1,000)
The coronavirus is said to be causing an increased sense of confinement in society.
“Do you sense that people around you are feeling an increased sense of confinement?”
- Yes – 58.7%
- No – 20.9%
- Don’t know – 20.4%
Finding: 50.4% of respondents were feeling a sense of confinement themselves. (n = 1,000)
“Are you feeling an increased sense of confinement?”
- Yes – 50.4%
- No – 31.6%
- Don’t know – 18.0%
Coronavirus and stress
With calls to refrain from going out, unable to spend free time as I wish – 48.3% (multiple answers allowed; n = 1,000)
- Of those (single answer; n = 483), who reported feeling stress – 91.1%
School life became different from normal because of things like remote learning – 42.8% (multiple answers allowed; n = 1,000)
- Of those (single answer; n = 428), who reported feeling stress – 71.3%
It became difficult to see family (who do not live in the same household), boyfriend / girlfriend, and friends – 32.6% (multiple answers allowed; n = 1,000)
- Of those (single answer; n = 326), who reported feeling stress – 88.7%
Positive effects from the pandemic
Has the coronavirus had a positive effect on the following?
- Relationships with family (who do not live in the same household), boyfriend / girlfriend, and friends: No – 62.9%; Yes – 11.1% (n = 1,000)
- Pursuit of higher education or employment: No – 59.5%; Yes – 11.6% (n = 1,000)
- School life: No – 59.3%; Yes – 22.5% (student respondents; n = 896)
Lifestyle changes: Things than have increased / decreased over the past year
Increased (multiple answers allowed; n = 1,000)
- Time using smartphone – 71.8%
- Time spent on hobbies – 55.1%
- Time playing video games – 53.9%
Decreased (multiple answers allowed; n = 1,000)
- Time spent going out – 55.3%
- Time spent with friends (excluding eating / drinking) – 48.7%
- Time spent eating / drinking with friends – 48.0%
Things experienced over the past month (multiple answers allowed; n = 1,000)
- Continued sense of uneasiness and irritation – 36.8%
- Continued fatigue – 33.8%
- Continued difficulty thinking and concentrating – 25.0%
A continued sense of uneasiness and irritation and continued fatigue were particularly high among women who reported decreases in outdoor hobbies, time spent going out, time spent with friends (excluding eating / drinking), and time spent relaxing with family, and among women who reported an increase in time spent alone with a sense of loneliness.
Further statistical analysis of the data (structural equation analysis) showed that stress response increased in particular as respondents spent more time alone indoors and less time in activities outside the home. The stress response was also generally higher among women than among men. At the same time, stress response decreased as respondents spent more time with their families.
Please select all of the below that you have experienced over the past month (multiple answers allowed; n = 1,000)
Things that relieved stress and improved spirits
- Boyfriend / girlfriend – 85.1%
- Friends (excluding school friends) – 70.2%
- School friends (including friends from student days) – 69.9%
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The Nippon Foundation
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