Construction Workers' Well-Being: What Leads to Depression, Anxiety and Stress?

Sukanlaya Sawang, Rebecca Langdon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Work-related stress is an important issue in any industry, particularly in construction, in which stressful environments are frequently encountered. “What are the primary stressors in the construction workplace?” and “What are the relationships between the strain effect of psychological distress and the countermeasures and coping mechanisms used by construction workers?” are, therefore, critical questions. The first question was addressed by using Q-methodology survey with 18 participants. The results showed that time, personal finance and the nature of tasks are important stressors. For the second question, a questionnaire survey administered to 91 participants on two construction sites of a single contractor was used to collect data about the stressors, psychological strain effects, and coping strategies they used. Mediated regression analysis of the data showed that lack of personal and family time, increases in the cost of living, and fears about job security all act as powerful stressors. Coping strategies including acceptance, self-blame, and disengagement are associated with higher levels of psychological distress. Increased substance use, although associated with lower levels of anxiety, may only be a short-term coping mechanism. An anomaly was found with humor as a coping strategy, in which the relationship was found to be counterintuitive and contrary to the findings of previous research. Future research should examine this more closely. Employers should better inform workers about the negative effects of maladaptive coping strategies and offer opportunities for adopting more positive alternatives.
Original languageEnglish
Article number04017100
Journal Journal of Construction Engineering and Management
Volume144
Issue number2
Early online date23 Nov 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2018

Fingerprint

coping
well-being
anxiety
worker
cost of living
job security
disengagement
humor
employer
regression analysis
finance
workplace
acceptance
industry
questionnaire
lack
methodology
time

Cite this

Construction Workers' Well-Being : What Leads to Depression, Anxiety and Stress? / Sawang, Sukanlaya; Langdon, Rebecca.

In: Journal of Construction Engineering and Management, Vol. 144, No. 2, 04017100, 02.2018.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{921e8f24c4b44520a1b88e647dbb78fa,
title = "Construction Workers' Well-Being: What Leads to Depression, Anxiety and Stress?",
abstract = "Work-related stress is an important issue in any industry, particularly in construction, in which stressful environments are frequently encountered. “What are the primary stressors in the construction workplace?” and “What are the relationships between the strain effect of psychological distress and the countermeasures and coping mechanisms used by construction workers?” are, therefore, critical questions. The first question was addressed by using Q-methodology survey with 18 participants. The results showed that time, personal finance and the nature of tasks are important stressors. For the second question, a questionnaire survey administered to 91 participants on two construction sites of a single contractor was used to collect data about the stressors, psychological strain effects, and coping strategies they used. Mediated regression analysis of the data showed that lack of personal and family time, increases in the cost of living, and fears about job security all act as powerful stressors. Coping strategies including acceptance, self-blame, and disengagement are associated with higher levels of psychological distress. Increased substance use, although associated with lower levels of anxiety, may only be a short-term coping mechanism. An anomaly was found with humor as a coping strategy, in which the relationship was found to be counterintuitive and contrary to the findings of previous research. Future research should examine this more closely. Employers should better inform workers about the negative effects of maladaptive coping strategies and offer opportunities for adopting more positive alternatives.",
author = "Sukanlaya Sawang and Rebecca Langdon",
year = "2018",
month = "2",
doi = "10.1061/(ASCE)CO.1943-7862.0001406",
language = "English",
volume = "144",
journal = "Journal of Construction Engineering and Management - ASCE",
issn = "0733-9364",
publisher = "American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE)",
number = "2",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Construction Workers' Well-Being

T2 - What Leads to Depression, Anxiety and Stress?

AU - Sawang, Sukanlaya

AU - Langdon, Rebecca

PY - 2018/2

Y1 - 2018/2

N2 - Work-related stress is an important issue in any industry, particularly in construction, in which stressful environments are frequently encountered. “What are the primary stressors in the construction workplace?” and “What are the relationships between the strain effect of psychological distress and the countermeasures and coping mechanisms used by construction workers?” are, therefore, critical questions. The first question was addressed by using Q-methodology survey with 18 participants. The results showed that time, personal finance and the nature of tasks are important stressors. For the second question, a questionnaire survey administered to 91 participants on two construction sites of a single contractor was used to collect data about the stressors, psychological strain effects, and coping strategies they used. Mediated regression analysis of the data showed that lack of personal and family time, increases in the cost of living, and fears about job security all act as powerful stressors. Coping strategies including acceptance, self-blame, and disengagement are associated with higher levels of psychological distress. Increased substance use, although associated with lower levels of anxiety, may only be a short-term coping mechanism. An anomaly was found with humor as a coping strategy, in which the relationship was found to be counterintuitive and contrary to the findings of previous research. Future research should examine this more closely. Employers should better inform workers about the negative effects of maladaptive coping strategies and offer opportunities for adopting more positive alternatives.

AB - Work-related stress is an important issue in any industry, particularly in construction, in which stressful environments are frequently encountered. “What are the primary stressors in the construction workplace?” and “What are the relationships between the strain effect of psychological distress and the countermeasures and coping mechanisms used by construction workers?” are, therefore, critical questions. The first question was addressed by using Q-methodology survey with 18 participants. The results showed that time, personal finance and the nature of tasks are important stressors. For the second question, a questionnaire survey administered to 91 participants on two construction sites of a single contractor was used to collect data about the stressors, psychological strain effects, and coping strategies they used. Mediated regression analysis of the data showed that lack of personal and family time, increases in the cost of living, and fears about job security all act as powerful stressors. Coping strategies including acceptance, self-blame, and disengagement are associated with higher levels of psychological distress. Increased substance use, although associated with lower levels of anxiety, may only be a short-term coping mechanism. An anomaly was found with humor as a coping strategy, in which the relationship was found to be counterintuitive and contrary to the findings of previous research. Future research should examine this more closely. Employers should better inform workers about the negative effects of maladaptive coping strategies and offer opportunities for adopting more positive alternatives.

U2 - 10.1061/(ASCE)CO.1943-7862.0001406

DO - 10.1061/(ASCE)CO.1943-7862.0001406

M3 - Article

VL - 144

JO - Journal of Construction Engineering and Management - ASCE

JF - Journal of Construction Engineering and Management - ASCE

SN - 0733-9364

IS - 2

M1 - 04017100

ER -