Topical Collection "Stress Management for Health"

A topical collection in Healthcare (ISSN 2227-9032). This collection belongs to the section "Chronic Care".

Editor

Dr. Alyx Taylor
E-Mail Website
Collection Editor
School of Rehabilitation, Sport and Psychology, AECC University College, Bournemouth BH5 2DF, UK
Interests: human stress response; mental health; neuroendocrinology; HPA-axis; neurophysiology; affective disorders; gene x environment interactions; child development; interventions for stress management; multi-modal rehabilitation for stress
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Topical Collection Information

Dear Colleagues,

People all over the world can encounter potentially challenging or stressful events and situations. The risk of being affected by stress begins before birth and continues throughout life. The systems of the body are coordinated to facilitate rapid mental processing and musculoskeletal actions as soon as a threat is perceived. These physiological responses to manage or avoid such stressors are natural and potentially life-saving. However, for modern society, the natural responses are not always appropriate. Furthermore, if the stressors are not overcome and the physiological response persists for extended periods of time, the mental and/or the physical health of the individual can be impaired. Such impairment can reduce the quality of life for the individual and place a burden of care on their family, health professionals and the community. Research data from developed countries have been used to estimate that the financial burden of reduced productivity and increased healthcare costs consume a small but significant percentage of gross domestic product annually. On the positive side, researchers are developing low-cost, effective interventions for stress management in all areas of life. Increasing the successful management of stress would not only improve the health and quality of life for the individuals concerned, but reduce the burden of cost on society. This collection brings together current research into all aspects of stress management for mental and physical health.

Dr. Alyx Taylor
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • psychological intervention
  • physical activity
  • stress management app
  • online intervention
  • pathology of stress
  • biochemical pathway
  • anxiety
  • depression
  • social support

Published Papers (6 papers)

2021

Article
Psychometric Properties of the Generalized Anxiety Disorder Scale-7 Item (GAD-7) in a Large Sample of Chinese Adolescents
Healthcare 2021, 9(12), 1709; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9121709 - 09 Dec 2021
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1089
Abstract
Anxiety symptoms are common among adolescents. A well-validated and easy-to-use tool is indispensable to measure and detect anxiety for timely interventions. The Generalized Anxiety Disorder Scale-7 item (GAD-7) is a self-report scale used to measure the severity of anxiety and has been validated [...] Read more.
Anxiety symptoms are common among adolescents. A well-validated and easy-to-use tool is indispensable to measure and detect anxiety for timely interventions. The Generalized Anxiety Disorder Scale-7 item (GAD-7) is a self-report scale used to measure the severity of anxiety and has been validated in adult populations, but psychometric properties of the GAD-7 remained rarely tested in adolescents. The study aimed to investigate the reliability and validity of the GAD-7 in Chinese adolescents. Sex- and age-specific analyses were conducted in a large sample of adolescents (n = 67,281, aged 10–17 years). Our results showed that the GAD-7 scores were higher in female and older adolescents. The GAD-7 presented good internal consistency and a unidimensional structure across sex- and age-specific groups. The GAD-7 scores were significantly correlated with the scores of the Patient Health Questionnaire-9 item (PHQ-9, a self-reported scale to measure depression symptoms) in all subgroups, indicating acceptable criterion validity. In conclusion, the GAD-7 is a scale with good psychometrics and can serve as a tool for anxiety screening in Chinese adolescents at the populational level. Full article
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Article
Burnout, Attachment and Mentalization in Nursing Students and Nurse Professionals
Healthcare 2021, 9(11), 1576; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9111576 - 18 Nov 2021
Viewed by 766
Abstract
(1) Background. In caretaking professions, attachment style and mentalization capacities are essential factors for establishing an effective caretaker–patient relationship and for buffering burnout. While attachment avoidance and dependency are considered risk factors for burnout, impairment in mentalization capacity is associated with psychological distress [...] Read more.
(1) Background. In caretaking professions, attachment style and mentalization capacities are essential factors for establishing an effective caretaker–patient relationship and for buffering burnout. While attachment avoidance and dependency are considered risk factors for burnout, impairment in mentalization capacity is associated with psychological distress and ineffective emotion regulation. (2) Objective: Evaluating the attachment style and mentalization capacity in nurse professionals and nursing students. We further investigated the impact of these factors on burnout in professional nurses. (3) Method: 94 nursing students and 94 controls and 34 professional nurses completed the Attachment Style Questionnaire (ASQ) and the Reflective Functioning Questionnaire (RFQ). For professional nurses, the Maslach’s Burnout Inventory (MBI) was also administered. (4) Results: Nursing students exhibited lower scores in secure attachment and higher scores in anxiety over relationships compared to controls while no difference in mentalization capacity was found between both groups. Importantly, attachment anxiety resulted a significant predictor of burnout in professional nurses. (5) Conclusions: Nursing students might compensate their attachment insecurity with high mentalization. Attachment security may play a protective role against burnout in the professional nurses. Education programs aimed at enhancing mentalizing abilities might facilitate nursing students’ entrance in the forthcoming clinical environment and practice. Implementing training strategies based on attachment theory may contribute to burnout prevention in nurse professionals. Full article
Article
Associations of 24-Hour Movement Behavior with Depressive Symptoms and Anxiety in Children: Cross-Sectional Findings from a Chinese Sample
Healthcare 2021, 9(11), 1532; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9111532 - 10 Nov 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 798
Abstract
This study examined the associations between adherence to 24-hour movement behavior guidelines (24-HMB) and the mental-health-related outcomes of depressive symptoms and anxiety in Chinese children. Data on movement behavior from 5357 children (4th and 5th grades), including physical activity, recreational screen time and [...] Read more.
This study examined the associations between adherence to 24-hour movement behavior guidelines (24-HMB) and the mental-health-related outcomes of depressive symptoms and anxiety in Chinese children. Data on movement behavior from 5357 children (4th and 5th grades), including physical activity, recreational screen time and sleep, were self-reported using the Health Behavior School-Aged Children Survey. Depressive symptoms and anxiety were self-reported using the Chinese version of the nine-item Patient Health Questionnaire and the Generalized Anxiety Disorder Scale, respectively. Depressive symptoms and anxiety were treated as categorical variables. Only 3.2% of the participants met physical activity, screen time, and sleep 24-HMB guidelines. Ordinal logistic regressions showed that, compared with participants who met the 24-HMB guidelines, participants who met none (odds ratio (OR) = 2.62, 95% CI: 1.76–3.90) or any one of the guidelines (OR = 1.88, 95% CI: 1.27–2.77) had higher odds of depressive symptoms. Similarly, there were higher odds of anxiety in participants who met none (OR = 2.32, 95% CI: 1.45–3.70) or any one of the recommendations (OR = 1.62, 95% CI: 1.03–2.57) compared with participants who met all the 24-HMB guidelines. Meeting the 24-HMB guidelines is associated with better mental-health-related outcomes in Chinese children. Because of the low prevalence of Chinese children meeting the 24-HMB recommendations, the present findings highlight the need to encourage children to regularly engage in physical activity, decrease their time spent sitting, and improve their sleep patterns. Full article
Article
Polish Adaptation of the Pregnancy-Related Anxiety Questionnaire—Revised 2 for All Pregnant Women
Healthcare 2021, 9(7), 917; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9070917 - 20 Jul 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 913
Abstract
Pregnancy-related anxiety (PrA) is a specific type of anxiety characteristic of the perinatal period. PrA can affect pregnancy and birth. However, no validated tool exists to measure PrA in Polish obstetric practice. The aim of this study was to translate the Pregnancy-Related Anxiety [...] Read more.
Pregnancy-related anxiety (PrA) is a specific type of anxiety characteristic of the perinatal period. PrA can affect pregnancy and birth. However, no validated tool exists to measure PrA in Polish obstetric practice. The aim of this study was to translate the Pregnancy-Related Anxiety Questionnaire—Revised 2 (PRAQ-R2) into Polish and to evaluate its reliability and factorial and construct validity. This study was conducted in Poland as an online questionnaire in April 2020 and included 175 healthy women. To validate the PRAQ-R2, we used standardized tools for the measurement of general anxiety: the modified Visual Analog Scale (VAS), the Ten-Item Personality Inventory (TIPI), and the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS). Scale reliability was assessed using Cronbach’s alpha. Concurrent validity was evaluated by calculating Spearman’s rho correlation coefficients. Statistical analyses were performed using R ver. 4.0.2. Values for comparative fit index >0.90, Tucker–Lewis index >0.90, and root mean square error of approximation <0.08 indicated acceptable model fit, confirming the reliability of the three-factor structure of the translation. The subscales and total scores had good consistency (α > 0.7), and convergent validity was demonstrated. The PRAQ-R2 as translated into Polish represents the first validated tool in Poland to measure PrA for all pregnant women. Full article
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Article
Smaller Cortisol Awakening Responses Are Associated with Greater Visual Dependence in Postural Control
Healthcare 2021, 9(6), 723; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9060723 - 12 Jun 2021
Viewed by 768
Abstract
There are known links between the hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal (HPA) axis and systems responsible for regulating posture. Our aim was to explore directly, for the first time, whether an aspect of circadian HPA axis activity (the cortisol awakening response: CAR) was associated with greater visual [...] Read more.
There are known links between the hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal (HPA) axis and systems responsible for regulating posture. Our aim was to explore directly, for the first time, whether an aspect of circadian HPA axis activity (the cortisol awakening response: CAR) was associated with greater visual dependency in postural control. For measurement of the CAR, electronically monitored saliva samples were collected by participants following morning awakening in their home environment. On the afternoons of the same days, postural sway was measured in the laboratory by exposing participants to static (control) and moving visual stimuli whilst standing still and upright on a force platform. Visual dependence was assessed as the increase in postural sway (path length) during exposure to the moving compared with the static condition. The 44 measurement days were derived from four days for each of eleven healthy participants (mean ± SD age: 51.18 ± 3.3 years). As expected, postural sway was greater when exposed to moving versus static cues. Mixed regression modelling showed that participants with smaller four day average CARs had greater deterioration in postural sway when presented with moving stimuli. These data are the first to document associations between the CAR and visual dependency in postural sway. Full article
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Article
Effects of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Mental Health in Peru: Psychological Distress
Healthcare 2021, 9(6), 691; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9060691 - 08 Jun 2021
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 3330
Abstract
This pandemic has been classified as a “psychological pandemic” that produces anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, and sleep disorders. As the mental health effects of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by SARS-CoV-2, continue to unfold, there are still large knowledge gaps about [...] Read more.
This pandemic has been classified as a “psychological pandemic” that produces anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, and sleep disorders. As the mental health effects of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by SARS-CoV-2, continue to unfold, there are still large knowledge gaps about the variables that predispose individuals to, or protect individuals against the disease. However, there are few publications on the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the mental health of citizens in Latin American countries. In this study, the effects that COVID-19 had on citizens of Peru have been described. For this, 1699 questionnaires, collected between 2 April and 2 September 2020, were analyzed. Descriptive, bivariate analysis was performed with odds ratio (OR) calculations and a data mining methodology. Sociodemographic variables (from the General Health Questionnaire), health conditions and perception, symptoms, and variables related to contact and preventive measures regarding COVID-19 were analyzed. As compared to other countries, less affectation of mental health and increased use of preventive measures were observed. It has been suggested that the country’s precarious health system and poverty rates prior to the pandemic may justify higher mortality figures in Peru than in other Latin American countries, despite prompt action for its containment and compliance with the protective measures. Psychological distress had a greater incidence in women, young people, people without a partner, and people without university studies. The most significant conditioning variables were self-perceived health status, headache or muscle pain over the past 14 days, level of studies, and age. The extensive use of preventive measures against COVID-19 is in line with the strict legislative measures taken, and this is, in turn, in line with other countries when looking at the lower effect on mental health, but contrary when focusing on the high lethality identified. The need to include the economy or availability and quality of healthcare in future studies arises, as well as the suitability to analyze the cause for differences between countries. Full article
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