Your SlideShare is downloading. ×
Relationships Among Mental Health, Social Support, and Stressors in the Military Health Care System
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in...5
×

Thanks for flagging this SlideShare!

Oops! An error has occurred.

×
Saving this for later? Get the SlideShare app to save on your phone or tablet. Read anywhere, anytime – even offline.
Text the download link to your phone
Standard text messaging rates apply

Relationships Among Mental Health, Social Support, and Stressors in the Military Health Care System

507

Published on

0 Comments
0 Likes
Statistics
Notes
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Views
Total Views
507
On Slideshare
0
From Embeds
0
Number of Embeds
0
Actions
Shares
0
Downloads
1
Comments
0
Likes
0
Embeds 0
No embeds

Report content
Flagged as inappropriate Flag as inappropriate
Flag as inappropriate

Select your reason for flagging this presentation as inappropriate.

Cancel
No notes for slide

Transcript

  • 1. Relationships Among Mental Health, Social Support, and Stressors in the Military Health Care System Stephanie C. Raducha, BA, Capt. Scott L. Johnston, PhD, USN, Jennifer A. Webb-Murphy, PhD, Eileen M. Delaney, PhD, Scott C. Roesch, PhD, Susan F. Fesperman, MPH, Elizabeth A. Vishnyak, MA, Bonnie J. Nebeker, AA, Steven K. Gerard, BA, Betsy J. Henderson-Grant, MA, Edoardo H. Mariani, BA Introduction: Service members routinely face a variety of stressful experiences. While the nature of a stressor can impact an individual’s level of psychological distress, social support has been shown to impact these effects. Method: Retrospectively analyzed self-report data of military service members who entered the Psychological Health Pathways (PHP) Program between March 2009 and February 2012. Results: Results showed statistically significant correlations among scores on the PCL-M (PTSD), the PHQ-9 (depression), and the SDS (disability) and the reported stressors of work, family, physical health, housing, relationship, and finances. Work, family, and physical health stressors were the most significantly correlated with PTSD and disability. Depression was negatively correlated with endorsing stressors. Analyses also revealed a positive relationship between service members who reported having no one to talk to when they are stressed (low social support) and PTSD , depression, and disability, and a negative relationship with resilience. Conclusion: Although past research has shown a connection between high levels of social support and low levels of mental health symptoms, the relationship between high levels of social support and high levels of resilience appears to be a novel finding. Research that utilizes longitudinal data will be able to augment these finding in order to better understand how social support and stressors change over time in relation to mental health symptoms. ABSTRACT INTRODUCTION METHOD RESULTS CONCLUSIONS • The majority of the sample were male, Marines, ranked E4 – E6, between the ages of 18 and 24. • Pearson product-moment correlation coefficients were conducted to determine relationships among stressors, social support and mental health variables. • The most commonly reported stressors were: work, relationship, and finance. • Significant correlations (p <0.05) were found between higher scores on the PCL-M (PTSD), and the SDS (disability), and the reported stressors of work, family, physical health, housing, relationship, and finances. • Higher scores on depression (PHQ-9) were negatively correlated with the stressors. • Further, work, family, and physical health stressors were the most significantly correlated with PTSD, depression, and higher disability (p <0.05). • For social support, correlations appeared to be strongest for those service members who reported having no one to talk to when they are stressed (low social support) and PTSD, depression, and disability. • Results also showed that those who reported having someone to talk to when stressed endorsed higher levels of resilience, regardless of the source. • Reporting having no one to talk to when stressed (low social support) also had a negative correlation with resilience. • Individuals who endorsed higher levels of resilience also reported more stressors. • High scores on the resilience measure indicate more resilience. • Those service members presenting for mental health care with stressors in the realms of work, family, and physical health may be most at risk for experiencing higher levels of mental health symptoms compared to those endorsing stressors in other areas. • However, higher depression scores were associated with less endorsement of stressors. • The findings that low social support (reporting having no one to talk to when stressed) was correlated with higher levels of psychological symptoms corroborates previous findings about the importance of social support in mental illness. • Individuals who endorsed higher levels of resilience also reported more stressors, suggesting that these individuals may be better able to cope with a variety of stressors and thus may take on more stressors. • Findings that those who reported having someone to talk to when stressed endorsed higher levels of resilience, regardless of the source, suggests that who one talks to is not as important as having someone to talk to. p <.05 * Correlation is significant at the 0.05 level (2-tailed). ** Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2-tailed). p <.05 * Correlation is significant at the 0.05 level (2-tailed). ** Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2-tailed). Table 3. Correlations of Source of Social Support and Mental Health Symptoms The views expressed in this poster are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Navy, the Department of Defense or the U.S. Government. Table 2. Correlations of Stressors and Symptoms Stressor Percent Work 69.4% Relationship 48.3% Finance 42.3% Family 37.8% Physical Health 36.2% Legal 17.7% Housing 9.3% Table 1. Percent of Population Reporting Stressor LIMITATIONS/FUTURE RESEARCH • These data are comprised of 10% of the mental health population at two military treatment facilities, not randomly sampled, and, as such, may not be representative. • Other limitations of this study were that the self-report measures did not measure the severity of stress from each stressor and data analyzed were collected at a single time-point. • Future research that examines longitudinally how social support and stressors change over time in relation to mental health variables, as well as levels of social support before a trauma occurs will provide more information about these complex relationships. Stressor PTSD (PCL-M) Depression (PHQ-9) Disability (SDS) Resilience (RSES) Finance .054* -.091** .141* .115** Relationship .057* -.115** .165* .169** Work .108** -.170** .215** .177** Legal -.007 -.018 .064 .025 Family .116** -.104** .183** .187** Housing .073** -.082** .157** .127** Physical Health .261** -.030 .229** .223** Source of Social Support PTSD (PCL-M) Depression (PHQ-9) Disability (SDS) Resilience (RSES) Family -.139** -.137** -.079** .186** Religious/ Spiritual Person -.058* -.023* -.001 .124** Fellow Service Member -.019** -.117** -.097** .123** Senior Leadership -.070** .054** -.030 .144** Significant Other -.084** -.115** -.048 .109** Non-military Friends -.129** -.080** -.043 .103** No one .182** .191** .127** -.187** • Research has shown that social support can help buffer against psychological distress. • Although social support can be beneficial in protecting an individual from experiencing negative psychological consequences after experiencing a trauma, it can also be harmful if it is perceived as negative. • For example, negative reactions and dissatisfaction with support have been shown to predict both the onset and severity of PTSD. • Research has also shown that the source of social support may also play a role in its impact on emotional health. •A retrospective study analyzing self-report data collected between March 2009 and February 2012. •Participants were active duty or reservist service members presenting for mental health care who filled out the PHP intake questionnaire (N=2364). •Basic demographic information and deployment history were collected in addition to the following measures: PTSD Checklist – Military (PCL-M), Patient Health Questionnaire – 9 (PHQ- 9), Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI), Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center Traumatic Brain Injury Assessment Tool (DVBIC), Combat Exposure Scale (CES), Response to Stressful Experiences Scale (RSES), and the Sheehan Disability Scale (SDS). •Participants were also asked to select all potential stressors (family, finances, relationship, legal, work, housing, physical health) and report who they talk to when stressed (fellow service member, significant other, chaplain, family, senior leadership, non-military friends, no one).

×