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Cyberchondria During the COVID-19 Pandemic: An Indian Perspective

Cyberchondria During the COVID-19 Pandemic: An Indian Perspective
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Author(s): Suprakash Chaudhury (Dr. D. Y. Patil Medical College, Hospital and Research Centre, India) and Sana Dhamija (Dr. D. Y. Patil Medical College, Hospital and Research Centre, India)
Copyright: 2022
Pages: 19
Source title: Handbook of Research on Cyberchondria, Health Literacy, and the Role of Media in Society’s Perception of Medical Information
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Hacer Aker (Selcuk University, Turkey) and Mary Aiken (University of East London, UK)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-8630-3.ch013

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Abstract

Many factors govern the behavior pertaining to anxiety regarding health – it may be stressors, triggers, adverse situations faced by people. Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 virus, health-related anxiety has been widespread. December 2019 saw the occurrence of a form of pneumonia, not known at that time, from the Wuhan region of China to rapidly proceed into a worldwide pandemic and lockdown. This disrupted normal life across the globe and affected social and economic functioning. Cyberchondria has been one of the coping strategies seen during this time, pertaining to online health-related searches which offer answers and relief as seen at the surface but also bringing a plethora of mental health challenges. The authors in this chapter try to simplify what exactly cyberchondria is and how has it affected the lives of the worldwide population during the COVID-19 crisis, the biggest pandemic of recent times. The origin, development, and prevalence of the concept, along with coping, treatment, and prevention of the condition are discussed.

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