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Type: Journal article
Title: A holistic understanding of the effect of stress on adolescent well-being: a conditional process analysis
Author: Branson, V.
Palmer, E.
Dry, M.J.
Turnbull, D.
Citation: Stress and Health, 2019; 35(5):626-641
Publisher: Wiley Online Library
Issue Date: 2019
ISSN: 1532-3005
Statement of
Victoria Branson, Edward Palmer, Matthew J. Dry, Deborah Turnbull
Abstract: While traditional assumptions tend to conceptualise stress as inherently dysfunctional, psychological theory suggests it is not intrinsically maladaptive. Contemporary models emphasise that the stress response can be differentiated into both negative and positive aspects, known as distress and eustress. Research examining the differential effect of positive and negative stress on adolescent wellbeing is limited and has been hindered by a lack of appropriate measurement tools. The aim of the present study was to utilise the recently developed Adolescent Distress-Eustress Scale (ADES) to provide a balanced understanding of the impact of stress on positive mental health, holistically considering the effect of both distress and eustress on adolescent wellbeing. 1,081 Australian adolescents (Mage = 15.14, 54.03% female) completed an online survey comprising of the ADES alongside measures of wellbeing, self-efficacy, psychological illbeing, physical activity, and daytime sleepiness. Conditional Process Analysis suggested that distress exerted no direct influence on wellbeing, with the observed negative relationship fully mediated by psychological and behavioural variables. Contrastingly, eustress was both directly related to increased wellbeing and exerted an indirect effect through relationships with mediating variables. These results demonstrate that stress can have profoundly positive consequences. Theoretical contributions, implications for practice, and perspectives for future research are discussed.
Keywords: Adolescence; Conditional Process Analysis; Distress; Eustress; Wellbeing
Rights: © 2019 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
RMID: 0030134425
DOI: 10.1002/smi.2896
Appears in Collections:Psychiatry publications

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