Prevalence and determinants of depression among academic staff in a tertiary educational institution in southern Nigeria

  • A. I. Obi
  • I. Okobia


Objective: This study assessed depression and its determinants among academic staffs in a tertiary education institution in Nigeria, to help improve their mental health status, academic wellbeing and work performance.
Design and setting: A descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted involving 330 academic staff of the University of Benin, Benin City, Edo State, using multistage sampling technique. Intervention and outcome measures: Data was collected using self-administered structured questionnaire adapted from Depression Literacy Questionnaire, Mental Health Knowledge Schedule, Depression Stigma Scale and Zung Self-Rating Depression Scale. Depressed respondents were categorized as mild, moderate and severe. IBM SPSS version 22.0 statistical software was used for analysis with statistical significance set at p<0.050 and 95% confidence interval.
Results: Two hundred and forty-five (74.2%) and 86 (26.1%) academic staff studied had good knowledge of depression and were depressed respectively. Among those depressed 32 (37.2%), 37 (43.0%) and 17 (19.8%) had mild depression, moderate depression and severe depression respectively. The risk for depression among study population was significantly higher in Nuclear than extended family type (OR=3.848; 95% Cl = 1.216 – 12.179, p =0.022); Junior than senior staff category (OR=3.066; 95% Cl = 1.441 – 6.620, p = 0.004) and among respondents with good compared to poor knowledge of depression (OR=0.463; 95% Cl = 0.259 – 0.827, p = 0.009).
Conclusion: A quarter of respondents studied were depressed with mild and moderate depression constituting majority of cases. Periodic mental health assessment is strongly recommended for academic staff to improve mental health and academic wellbeing.


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eISSN: 0012-835X