The Relationship of Risk and Protective Factors with Mental Health among the Youth in Kashmir

Document Type : Original Article


Department of Applied Psychology, Pondicherry University, India


Introduction: The main intent of this study was to estimate the relationship of risk (adverse childhood experiences and conflict exposure) and protective factors (social support and hope) with mental health among youth in Kashmir, India.
Method: A cross-sectional co-relational research design was employed in this study.  The study included a sample of 693 (college and university) students who completed the survey questionnaires including “Adverse Childhood Experiences Scale, Kashmir Conflict Exposure Checklist, Mental Health Inventory (MHI-18), Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support and Adult Hope Scale” by using a multi-stage sampling method. Data was analyzed by computing Spearman’s Rank-Order Correlation to test the relationship among the study variables.
Results: The findings revealed that Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and conflict exposure had a positive relationship with depression, anxiety, and loss of behavior control and a negative relationship with positive affect and overall mental health. On the contrary, social support and hope were negatively related with depression, anxiety, and loss of behavior control and positively related with positive affect and overall mental health, respectively.
Conclusion: The present study provides evidence regarding the negative impact of ACEs and exposure to conflict on the mental health of the youth. The protective role of social support and hope in enhancing the mental health was validated in the present study. Therefore, the findings suggest enhancement of social support and development hope to promote mental health among the trauma exposed youth of Kashmir.


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