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 Table of Contents  
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2013  |  Volume : 1  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 19-23

The level of stress and coping mechanism adopted by I Year B.Sc. nursing students


1 Lecturer in Department of Psychiatric Nursing, Yenepoya Nursing College, Mangalore, India
2 IV year B.Sc. Nursing Students, Yenepoya Nursing College, Mangalore, India

Date of Web Publication21-Jun-2013

Correspondence Address:
C Viji Prasad
Lecturer, Department of Psychiatric Nursing, Yenepoya Nursing College, Mangalore
India
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DOI: 10.4103/2321-4848.113554

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  Abstract 

Background: Stress is a fact of life that every human deals with on a daily basis. In the transitional nature of student life in professional courses like nursing, initial period of course is stressful and it adversely affects the emotional, physical, social, and academic functions. Even though the perception and response to stress and way of coping differs individually, it may produce questionable behavioral patterns in student nurses during the course of their study like feeling of loneliness, nervousness, sleeplessness, and worrying. Thus, the student nurse faces a lot of challenges and problems at the time of I Year. Objectives: The present study aimed to determine the level of stress and coping mechanisms adopted by I Year B.Sc. nursing students. Materials and Methods: A total of 60 I Year B.Sc. nursing students were selected by using non-probability convenient sampling technique. The tools used for data collection were perceived stress scale, structured coping scale, and socio- demographic proforma. Results: The studies revealed that majority of students (95.1%) were in the age group of 17-19 years. The results showed that only one student (1.7%) has severe stress, 46.7% has moderate stress, and remaining 51.6% has mild stress, and majority of the students (100) had average coping. There was no significant correlation (-1.167) between stress and coping mechanism of I Year B.Sc. nursing students. Conclusion: Majority of students had mild stress and average coping. The nurse administrator should plan and organize educational program for nursing students, in order to prepare them to cope up with any stressful situations. Hence, the researcher emphasizes the need for more research to improve the knowledge and by applying the research finding for future.

Keywords: Coping mechanisms, demographic variables, level of stress, nursing students


How to cite this article:
Prasad C V, Suresh A, Thomas DK, Pritty M K, Beebi S, Multazim V. The level of stress and coping mechanism adopted by I Year B.Sc. nursing students. Arch Med Health Sci 2013;1:19-23

How to cite this URL:
Prasad C V, Suresh A, Thomas DK, Pritty M K, Beebi S, Multazim V. The level of stress and coping mechanism adopted by I Year B.Sc. nursing students. Arch Med Health Sci [serial online] 2013 [cited 2014 Aug 23];1:19-23. Available from: http://www.amhsjournal.org/text.asp?2013/1/1/19/113554

1 Guided the student for the research



  Introduction Top


Today, mental disorders stand among the leading cause of disease and disability in the world. One in four (25%) people in the world will be affected by mental or neurological disease at some point in their lives. Being 'stress' as a universal phenomena reflecting in each aspect of life cycle, was identified as a major cause of attrition among all categories of people. [1]

Although stress affects the biophysical and emotional wellbeing of the people, it varies with age, gender, mental capabilities, and environmental conditions. Stress has been defined as a process, which causes or participates individual to believe that they are unable to cope up with situation facing them and the feeling of anxiety, tension, frustration, and anger, which results from the recognition that they are failing in some ways and situation is getting out of control. [2]

The term 'coping' is derived from the Greek word "kolaptin "- to strike. The term denotes control and contending successfully. In times of stress, an individual normally engages in certain coping mechanisms, handle stressful situation and their associated emotions. The goal of any nursing education program is to graduate competent registered professional nurse. During the process of acquiring and demonstrating skill competencies and passing written examination, the students undergo a considerable amount of stress. Apart from academic stressors, there are financial hardship and other personal stressors that nursing student's encounter. Stress may affect the students' health and their academic performance. Coping strategies refer to the specific efforts, both behavioral and psychological, that people employ to master, reduce, tolerate or minimize stressful events.

A study conducted in Mangalore to determine the perceived level of stress and coping behavior among B. Sc. nursing students in selected colleges found that 55% of the sample experienced severe stress, 12.5% experienced moderate level of stress, and 32.5% experienced mild level of stress. The study concluded that stress may arouse from their work, contact with patients, and demands of the organization. [3]

Nursing students are valuable human resources. Detection of potential stress among nursing students is crucial since stress can lead to low productivity, low quality of life, and suicidal ideas. Identifying factors affecting stress among nursing students can help nursing educators to find ways to decrease stress.

During the B. Sc. nursing program, the researcher experienced a lot of stressful situations and fearful moments in the I year. Those eventful days were questionable coping pattern and which adversely affected the physical strength and emotional stability and academic activities. So, for many students and their colleagues were experiencing the same situation, the researchers understood that stress experienced by I year student nurse produces certain behavioral and emotional responses. Therefore, based on the above life experiences ground full evidences, the researcher took interest in exploring the stress experienced by I Year B. Sc. nursing students. Here, the researcher tries to help student nurses to better understand about the phenomena of stress and coping.


  Materials and Methods Top


A descriptive approach was adopted in this study. The data was collected using non-probability convenient sampling technique. Sixty I year B. Sc. nursing students were selected for the study. The study was conducted in Yenepoya Nursing College at Mangalore. The tools used for this study were demographic proforma, perceived stress scale, and structured coping scale. The perceived stress scale consists of 10 items; it is measured with help of modified Likert type scale. Each item has 5 alternatives: Never, almost never, sometimes, fairly often, and very often. The structured coping scale consists of 24 items. Each item has 5 alternatives: Strongly agree, agree, uncertain, disagree, and strongly disagree. After the ethical approval from the Ethical Committee of Yenepoya University, the tool was pre-tested by administering it to 6 I Year B. Sc nursing students. The samples found that the instructions and the language of the tool were clear and understandable, and the time taken to complete the tool was 20 minutes. The reliability of the tool was tested by Cronbach's alpha method. Pilot study was conducted to find out the feasibility of the study. Data analysis was done by using both descriptive and inferential statistics.


  Result Top


The study sample consisted of 60 I year B. Sc nursing students. Majority of the students, (57 (95.7%)) were in the age group of (17-19) years, and 98% of them were females. Maximum percentages (76.7%) of students belong to Christian religion. About 95% of the participants were staying in the hostel. Most of the students (98.3%) were from nuclear family. Nearly (46.7%) of the samples' hobby were listening to music. The details are depicted in [Table 1].
Table 1: Frequency and percentage distribution of sample characteristics

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Majority of the students (51.6%) had mild level of stress, and only 1.7% had severe stress. Majority of the students (100%) had an average coping. The details of the findings are summarized in [Table 2] and [Figure 1].
Figure 1: Description of subjects according to the coping mechanism. All students had an average coping (100%)

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Table 2: Description of subject according to the level of stress

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The [Figure 2] shows that there was no correlation (-1.167) between level of stress and coping mechanisms adopted by I Year B. Sc. nursing students.
Figure 2: Scatter diagram showing the correlation between levels of stress and coping mechanism of I year B. Sc. Nursing students.

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The present study showed that the stress score is independent of selected demographic variables that is; age (χ2 = 0.087, P > 0.05), gender (χ2 = 1, P > 0.05), religion (χ2 = 0.31, P > 0.05), place of living (χ2 = 0.251, P > 0.05), type of family (χ2 = 0.433, P > 0.05), order of birth (χ2 = 1.92, P > 0.05), economical support (χ2 = 2.065, P > 0.05), hobbies (χ2 = 2.082, P > 0.05), selection of course (χ2 = 0.074, P > 0.05), and medium of instructions (χ2 = 0.231, P > 0.05). Hence, the null hypothesis is accepted and the research hypothesis is rejected indicating that there is no significant association between the stress score and selected demographic variables. The details of the above findings are showed in [Table 3].
Table 3: Association between stress level and selected demographic variables

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Data presented in [Table 4] showed that the coping mechanism scores are independent of selected demographic variables like age (χ2 = 0.107, P > 0.05), gender (χ2 = 1, P > 0.05), religion (χ2 = 0.491, P > 0.05), place of living (χ2 = 0.606, P > 0.05), type of family (χ2 = 0.483, P > 0.05), order of birth (χ2 = 0.104, P > 0.05), economical support (χ2 = 0.358, P > 0.05), hobbies (χ2 = 0.427, P > 0.05) selection of course (χ2 = 0.49, P > 0.05), and medium of instructions (χ2 = 0.483, P > 0.05). Hence, the null hypothesis is accepted and the research hypothesis is rejected indicating that there is no significant association between the coping mechanisms adopted by I year B. Sc nursing students and selected demographic variables.
Table 4: Association between coping mechanisms adopted by students and selected demographic variables

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  Discussion Top


Stress in nursing students is an area of growing concern, and it may result in psychological distress, physical complaints, behavior problem, and poor academic performance. The present study was conducted in one of the private nursing college in Mangalore to assess the stress level and coping mechanisms adopted by nursing students.

In the present study, result revealed that majority of students (51.7%) had mild stress and 46.7% students had moderate stress and remaining (1.7%) students had severe stress. This was supported by the study done by Sheu et al, on stress levels and coping behavior of nursing students, which showed that the level of stress in nursing students are moderate.

In the study, 86.7% students are having well-coping and 13.3% having average coping and there is no students with poor coping. The above findings of the study are compatible with the findings of Sheu et al. [4]

The study result revealed that there is no correlation between stress and coping. The above findings appear consistent with research of Tully A. who had done a study on stress, source of stress, and ways of coping among psychiatric nursing students, and findings revealed that all students were found to have limited coping skills. [5]

The present study findings shows that there was no significant association between stress level score and with selected demographic variables such as age, gender, religion, place of living, type of family, order of birth, economic support, hobbies, selection/choice of course, medium of instructions in college. Findings of the present study are consistent with another study conducted in Bangalore to assess the stressors, the level of stress, and coping methods adopted by the M Sc. nursing students. The sample size was 100. The results of the study showed that there was no significant association between the stress levels with selected demographic variables.

The present study findings shows that there was no significant association between coping mechanism with selected demographic variables such as age, gender, religion, place of living, type of family, order of birth, economic support, hobbies, selection/choice of course, medium of instruction in college.

Findings of the present study are consistent with another study conducted in Punjab to assess the stress level and coping strategies among nursing students. The sample size was 180. The results of the study showed that there was no significant association between the coping strategies with selected demographic variables.

It has been concluded that the nursing students perceived different levels of stress due to academic, clinical, and other psychosocial factors. Further, they use a mix of coping strategies to overcome stress to maintain a balance on a wellness-illness continuum.

Coping with stress for a student nurse is a dynamic and ongoing process, aimed at survival, growth, and maintenance of the individual integrity. Nursing student tries to restore the balance and equilibrium within her by attempting adjustment through the use of various coping strategies, which can be healthy or unhealthy. It is important for the nurse educators to find out the sources of stress and coping strategies adopted by the students to help them cope well with problems in daily life.

 
  References Top

1.Sheu S, Lin HS, Hwang SL. Perceived stress and physio-psycho-social status of nursing students during their initial period of clinical practice. Int J Nurs Stud 2002;39:165-75.  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.Mauni J, Clegg R. Graduate nursing students. J Nurs Educ 1983;22:329-34.  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.Lazarus RS. Theory-based stress measurement. Psycho Inq 1990;1:3-13.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.Sheu S, Lin HS, Hwang SL. Perceived stress and physio-psycho social status of nursing students during their initial period of clinical practice: The effect of coping behaviors. Int J Nurs Stud 2002;39:165-75.  Back to cited text no. 4
    
5.Tully A. Stress, sources of stress and ways of coping among the psychiatric nursing students. J Psychiatr Ment Health Nurs 2004;11:43-7.  Back to cited text no. 5
    


    Figures

  [Figure 1], [Figure 2]
 
 
    Tables

  [Table 1], [Table 2], [Table 3], [Table 4]



 

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