Fri, 08/26/2022 – 14:52 pm | Written by: David Tisdale
The collaborative research of a University of Southern Mississippi (USM) faculty member with several colleagues in his field appears in International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction.
Dr. Michael Madson, Professor in the College of Psychology, co-authored an article titled “Mental Health Risk Profiles and Related Substance Use During the Coronavirus Pandemic Among College Students Using Substances” which is based on a large multi-site study with representation from all major areas in the United States.
According to Dr. Madson, the study results indicate that levels of anxiety and depression in college students have remained relatively constant over the year following the outbreak of the COVID-19 epidemic and are a concern because anxiety was the most prevalent mental health complaint among college students. before COVID-19. The study also examined the ongoing impact of COVID-19 compared to several studies that have looked at primary effects.
“The fact that we found high levels of alcohol and cannabis use among students with mild, moderate and severe mental health symptoms highlights that students may use these substances to deal with their distress,” Dr. Madson explained. “This is important for university staff to monitor and speak as students return to campus in person full-time. Colleges and universities will need to pay more attention and resources to substance use, mental health, and intervention than they did before the pandemic.”
Furthermore, Dr. Madson noted that he and his colleagues found disparities regarding racial, ethnic, and sexual minorities that were most negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, as they experienced more psychological distress. “Universities will benefit from implementing culturally informed mental health and substance abuse campaigns to focus on reducing these disparities,” he said.
The article can be found at this link: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11469-022-00813-1
A faculty member at USM since 2005, Dr. Madson’s areas of expertise include harm reduction of drug use among college students, brief health interventions, health promotion, motivational interviewing, addiction and recovery.
For information about the USM School of Psychology, visit usm.edu/psychology/index.php.