Job Strain, Social Support, Coping Strategies, and Psychological Distress among Pregnant Thai Women
thesisposted on 01.11.2015, 00:00 by Natthananporn Sanguanklin
Purpose: Job strain has been identified as an important cause of psychological distress among women in many industrialized countries. In Thailand, where almost 76% of women of reproductive age participate in the labor force, job strain may be an unexplored but significant contributor to psychological distress among pregnant women. Perceive workplace support, perceived family support, and coping strategies are shown to have a moderating effect against the negative impact of job strain. The study aims were to examine: 1) the direct effects of job strain, perceived workplace support, perceived family support, and coping strategies on psychological distress; and 2) the moderating effect of perceived workplace support, perceived family support, and coping strategies on the relationship between job strain and psychological distress. Method: Lazarus and Folkman’s Transactional Model of stress and coping guided this cross-sectional study. Full-time employed pregnant women (N=300) were recruited from three antenatal clinics in Thailand. Thai versions of the following instruments were used: the State- Anxiety Inventory and CES-D (psychological distress); the Job Content Questionnaire (job strain and perceived workplace support); the Medical Outcome Study Social Support Survey (perceived family support); and the Ways of Coping Checklist–Revised (coping strategies). Results: In the multiple linear regression model, life stress, job strain, perceived workplace support, perceived family support, and seeking social support as a coping strategy explained 54% of the variance in psychological distress. In the separate hierarchical multiple linear regression models, two types of coping strategies, seeking social support and wishful thinking, significantly moderated the effect of job strain on psychological distress. Perceived family support had a significant main effect in reducing psychological distress but did not moderate the relationship between job strain and psychological distress. Conclusions: Job strain is a significant contributor to psychological distress. The average levels of seeking social support and wishful thinking were most beneficial in moderating the negative impact of job strain on psychological distress. However, women with very high levels of seeking social support and very low levels of wishful thinking were at highest risk for experiencing job strain-related psychological distress. Interventions should be targeted to these two at-risk groups.