The effects of stress on job functioning of military men and women
This study examined the relationships between domains of stress (work-related, familyrelated, finances-related, health-related), coping style, substance use, and symptoms of depression with level of job functioning among women and men in the U.S. armed forces. Multivariate cumulative logistic regression analyses were conducted with data from the 1995 Department of Defense Survey of Health Related Behaviors among Military Personnel. Results showed that both military men and women were nearly twice as likely to report higher levels of stress at work (39%) than in their family or personal lives (22%). In contrast, women (29%) were more likely than men (22%) to experience high levels of family stress. Additionally, 33% of women experienced high stress due to being a woman in the military. The effects of stress and depression on job functioning were quite similar for women and men. For both genders, higher levels of work-related stress, health-related stress, and number of depressive symptoms increased the odds of a lower level of job functioning. In addition, for men only, higher levels of family-related stress, use of a negative coping style, illicit drug use, and being a heavy drinker increased the likelihood of lower job functioning. Findings suggest that it may be useful for military health providers to focus on interventions to identify, prevent, and provide care for stress-related problems and depressive symptoms for military personnel.