Depression, Anxiety, and Stress among Health Science Students Belonging to Non-affluent Families

Introduction: Health science students face tremendous stress in psychological, academic, and existential areas as they progress through their education. A medical student who is put in a new school with a changing teaching schedule may require coping methods.

The goal of this study was to look at the levels of depression, anxiety, and stress (DAS) among health science students at the University Tunku Abdul Rahman in Malaysia in academic years 1 to 5.

Students studying medicine, traditional Chinese medicine, and physiotherapy at the undergraduate level were chosen for a questionnaire-based descriptive correlational study. The DAS scale questionnaire 21 (DASS 21) was used to examine stress levels and other factors, while the General health questionnaire 12 (GHQ 12) was utilised to assess general health among 134 students a week before their monthly exams.

The findings revealed that 9.7% of students enrolled in health science courses suffer from severe depression. Around 42% of pupils showed signs of despair and anxiety in combination. The three DAS domains were found to be highly linked. Female students were found to be more depressed (38 percent) than male pupils (18 percent ). The first-year students in the MBBS degree had much higher DAS levels than the final-year graduating students. Depression and stress levels, as well as their correlations, were shown to be high among students who had experienced a traumatic life event within the previous year. GHQ scores were >6 in 39.55 percent of students in all health science courses, equal to 6 in 9.7 percent, and others in 50.75 percent of students.

Conclusion: A substantial percentage of students studying health sciences had higher DAS levels, which were linked to a number of significant characteristics. There is a need for university employees to embrace stronger counselling and mentoring strategies, as well as improved connectedness among health science students. To alleviate the disadvantages, proactive measures must be taken at the community level.

Author(S) Details

Kartheek R. Balapala
Department of Basic Medical Sciences, Physiological Sciences Unit, MCS School of Medicine, Copperbelt University, Zambia.

Balakrishnan Subramanian
Department of Basic Medical Sciences, Physiological Sciences Unit, MCS School of Medicine, Copperbelt University, Zambia.

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