Adolescence is a period characterized by development and multiple changes in all aspects of an individualâs life, calling for new psychological adaptations. This period of change and transitions brings with it a number of potential stressors, such as changes in responsibilities and interpersonal relationships as well as greater school demands. Although exposure to negative stressors is considered an inevitable and normal part of adolescent development, previous research findings suggest that exposure to cumulative stressors, especially those in an interpersonal context (e.g. peers, family, romantic relationships), is related to development of psychological symptoms of clinical significance, including symptoms of depression.
Adolescent stress was assessed using the 30-item version of the Adolescent Stress Questionnaire (ASQ-N). This is originally a 58-item questionnaire concerning common adolescent stressors assessed during the last year and rated on a 5-point Likert scale: 1 (not at all stressful or is irrelevant to me); 2 (a little stressful); 3 (moderately stressful); 4 (quite stressful); and 5 (very stressful). The ASQ has been continuously developed and validated since the mid-1990s and the instrument has been successfully tested for use in a Norwegian adolescent sample. Further validations of the instrument have reduced the scale to 30 items, with support for high internal consistency and construct validity. The scale consists of seven dimensions reflecting the following stressors: teacher/adult interaction (e.g., lack of respect from teachers, not being listened to by teachers); peer pressure (e.g. peers hassling you about the way you look, pressure to fit in with peers); home life (e.g. abiding by petty rules at home, disagreements between your parents); romantic relationships (e.g. not enough time for your boyfriend/girlfriend, getting along with your boyfriend/girlfriend); school attendance (e.g. abiding by petty rules at school, compulsory school attendance); school/leisure conflict (e.g. not enough time for leisure activities, not enough time for activities outside school hours); and school performance (e.g. difficulty with some subjects, teachers expecting too much from you).
The Relationship between Stress, Leisure Time Vigorous Physical Activity and Depressive Symptoms in Adolescents
Unni K. Moksnes
Last date updated on June, 2014