1 Department of Oral Medicine, School of Dentistry, Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, Kermanshah, Iran
2 School of Dentistry, Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, Kermanshah, Iran
Background and Aim:
Medical and dental students are predisposed to developing psychiatric disorders owing to heavy physical, intellectual, and emotional activities. This study was conducted to evaluate the mental health status of medical and dental students.
Materials and Methods:
This cross-sectional study was conducted on the first- and final-year medical and dental students at Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences in 2016. The mental health status was measured by the General Health Questionnaire-28 (GHQ-28) involving somatic, social, anxiety, and depression domains. Scores > 6 (out of 28) and > 2 (out of 7) were considered to show psychiatric disorder for each domain, respectively. Data were analyzed by SPSS-18 using Kruskal-Wallis and Chi-square tests (P< 0.05).
The participants consisted of 246 students (39.4% first- and 37.8% last-year medical students; 8.1% first- and 14.6% last-year dental students) aged 18-37 years (22.6 ± 3.3). Psychiatric disorder, somatic symptoms, social dysfunction, anxiety, and depression were experienced by 44.7, 42.7, 46.3, 49.6, and 28.5% of the students, respectively. The prevalence of psychiatric disorder was comparable between the first- and final-year medical students (40.2% and 48.4%, respectively; P = 0.258). The final-year dental students significantly underwent more psychiatric disorder than the first-year dental students (61.1% and 20%, respectively; P = 0.003). There were no significant differences between the medical and dental students in the first (P = 0.089) and final (P = 0.196) years. There was also no significant association between the occurrence of psychiatric disorder and gender and age group (P> 0.05).
Psychiatric disorder was common among dental and medical students. Hence, preventive and control measures are suggested to improve their mental health.
Keywords: Mental health, General health questionnaire, Medical students, Dental students, Cross-sectional study, Somatic symptoms, Psychiatric disorder.
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* Address correspondence to this author at the Department of Oral Medicine, School of Dentistry, Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, Kermanshah, Iran; Tel: 98-918-8371081; E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org