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Open AccessArticle

Factors Associated with Initiation and Sustenance of Stress Management Behaviors in Veterinary Students: Testing of Multi-Theory Model (MTM)

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Department of Dermatology, University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson, MS 39216, USA
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Department of Preventive Medicine, School of Medicine/John D. Bower School of Population Health, University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson, MS 39216, USA
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Center for Animal and Human Health in Appalachia, College of Veterinary Medicine, Lincoln Memorial University, Harrogate, TN 37752, USA
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Substance Use and Mental Health Laboratory, Department of Health, Human Performance and Recreation, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, AR 72701, USA
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Department of Behavioral & Environmental Health, School of Public Health, Jackson State University, Jackson, MS 39217, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(2), 631; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17020631
Received: 18 December 2019 / Revised: 13 January 2020 / Accepted: 15 January 2020 / Published: 18 January 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Health Behavior, Chronic Disease and Health Promotion)
Veterinary students across the United States face the challenge of stress during school every day. When managed improperly, stress can become chronic and manifest in physical and emotional consequences. The purpose of this study was to examine the utility of the multi-theory model (MTM) of health behavior change in predicting the initiation and sustenance of stress management behaviors among veterinary students. A cross-sectional design was used to study the efficacy of the MTM in predicting initiation and sustenance of stress management behaviors among veterinary students at a private College of Veterinary Medicine in the Southeast United States. Researchers collected data using a 54-item valid and reliable survey. Only students who did not already engage in daily stress management behaviors were included in the study. After recruitment and exclusion, a total of 140 students remained and participated in the study. Hierarchical multiple regression revealed that, for initiation of stress management behaviors, 49.5% of the variance was explained by depression, academic classification, and behavioral confidence. Regarding sustenance of stress management behaviors, 50.4% of the variance was explained by perceived stress, depression, academic classification, and emotional transformation. MTM serves as a promising framework for predicting initiation and sustenance of health behavior change. Based on the results of this study, interventions aimed to promote stress management behaviors in veterinary students should focus on the MTM constructs of behavioral confidence and emotional transformation. View Full-Text
Keywords: stress; relaxation behavior; multi-theory model; health behavior change stress; relaxation behavior; multi-theory model; health behavior change
MDPI and ACS Style

K. Nahar, V.; K. Wells, J.; E. Davis, R.; C. Johnson, E.; W. Johnson, J.; Sharma, M. Factors Associated with Initiation and Sustenance of Stress Management Behaviors in Veterinary Students: Testing of Multi-Theory Model (MTM). Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 631.

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