Depression, anxiety, stress and self-esteem among students in Owo, Southwest, Nigeria
Mental health disorders were reported to pose significant problems for students of higher institutions. The prevention of mental health disorders and promotion of psychological well being among students of tertiary institutions remain a challenge for low and middle-income countries. This study assessed the prevalence of depression, anxiety and stress and their relationships with selfesteem among polytechnic students. A total number of 495 students of the Rufus Giwa Polytechnic, Owo, Ondo State, Nigeria completed the version 21 of the Depression, Anxiety and Stress Scale and Rosenberg Self-esteem Scale. The mean scores of the DASS-21 were 12.22, 14.0 and 12.50 respectively and 56%, 42% and 47% of the students were diagnosed for probable depression, anxiety and stress respectively. The mean score of self-esteem was 22.5, SD = 19.02 (range =20-40). The results also showed that 53%, 32% and 13% of the participants had low, moderate and high self-esteem respectively. There were negative and significant correlations between self-esteem and depression (r=-.345, p=0.002), anxiety (r= -.687, p=.004) and stress (r= -.825, p=0.002).Females and more senior participants had higher scores in all the variables. The surveyed students experienced high levels of probable depression, anxiety, stress and low self-esteem. Self-esteem also negatively correlated with depression, anxiety and stress. These negative emotional experiences could lower the academic achievements and overall success of students. It is therefore necessary that the polytechnic educational authorities frequently evaluate the mental health status of students and also design psychological intervention programmes to alleviate any observed psychological distress.
Keywords: Depression, Anxiety, Stress, Self-esteem, Polytechnic, Nigeria