Female students were more stressed than males but they employ more coping strategies as well. Low self-esteem coupled with self-blame and self-criticism is quite common.
Stress is increasingly becoming a part of our daily lives.
Academic pressures combined with emotional factors prevail during the first year, while reasons related to patient care and physical factors are more important in subsequent years.
Additionally, there are long working hours, lack of peer support, lack of recreational activities, financial strains, life and death situations, and patient cultural and minority issues, which are all reasons for stress associated with medical education and training .
Over 82% found studying stressful and 64.3% were not sleeping well. Perceived stress scores were statistically significantly high for specific stressors of studying in general, worrying about future, interpersonal conflict, and having low self-esteem.
Coping strategies that were statistically significantly applied more often were blaming oneself and being self-critical, seeking advice and help from others, and finding comfort in religion. Most of the stressors are from coursework and interpersonal relationships.
It has also been found that students with engagement strategy of coping are able to modify situations, resulting in a more adaptive outcome, and also have reported fewer symptoms of depression [20, 33].
Studies on stress and coping strategies among medical students in Saudi Arabia are few and far in between.
With all the evidence presented above on how the medical student life is burdened with stress, failure to resolve student stress in the long-term could have serious professional and personal consequences .
Coping has been viewed as a stabilizing factor that may assist an individual in psychosocial adaptation during stressful events .