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      Low Self-Esteem and Its Association With Anxiety, Depression, and Suicidal Ideation in Vietnamese Secondary School Students: A Cross-Sectional Study


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          Background: There is a correlation between self-esteem in adolescents and risks and protective factors for their health and welfare. The study was conducted to determine the prevalence of low self-esteem and sociodemographic features related to anxiety, depression, educational stress, and suicidal ideation in secondary school students in Vietnam.

          Methods: A cross-sectional design was employed for this study with participation of 1,149 students in Cantho City in Vietnam. A structured questionnaire was applied to ask about self-esteem, depression, anxiety, educational stress, and suicidal ideation.

          Results: Students with low self-esteem were detected at a prevalence of 19.4%. High educational stress and physical and emotional abuse by parents or other adults in the household were major risk factors correlated to low self-esteem, while a protective factor for low self-esteem was attending supplementary classes. An association among lower self-esteem and increased anxiety, depression, and suicidal ideation was detected.

          Conclusions: Self-esteem is associated with anxiety, depression, and academic stress, which significantly affect students’ quality of life and links to suicidal ideation. These results therefore suggested the need for a school-based or web-based provision aimed at proactively increasing students’ self-esteem and skills for dealing with academic stress.

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          Most cited references33

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          Global Self-Esteem and Specific Self-Esteem: Different Concepts, Different Outcomes

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            Contingencies of self-worth.

            Research on self-esteem has focused almost exclusively on level of trait self-esteem to the neglect of other potentially more important aspects such as the contingencies on which self-esteem is based. Over a century ago, W. James (1890) argued that self-esteem rises and falls around its typical level in response to successes and failures in domains on which one has staked self-worth. We present a model of global self-esteem that builds on James' insights and emphasizes contingencies of self-worth. This model can help to (a) point the way to understanding how self-esteem is implicated in affect, cognition, and self-regulation of behavior; (b) suggest how and when self-esteem is implicated in social problems; (c) resolve debates about the nature and functioning of self-esteem; (d) resolve paradoxes in related literatures, such as why people who are stigmatized do not necessarily have low self-esteem and why self-esteem does not decline with age; and (e) suggest how self-esteem is causally related to depression. In addition, this perspective raises questions about how contingencies of self-worth are acquired and how they change, whether they are primarily a resource or a vulnerability, and whether some people have noncontingent self-esteem.
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              Gender differences in self-esteem: a meta-analysis.

              Two analyses were conducted to examine gender differences in global self-esteem. In analysis I, a computerized literature search yielded 216 effect sizes, representing the testing of 97,121 respondents. The overall effect size was 0.21, a small difference favoring males. A significant quadratic effect of age indicated that the largest effect emerged in late adolescence (d = 0.33). In Analysis II, gender differences were examined using 3 large, nationally representative data sets from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). All of the NCES effect sizes, which collectively summarize the responses of approximately 48,000 young Americans, indicated higher male self-esteem (ds ranged from 0.04 to 0.24). Taken together, the 2 analyses provide evidence that males score higher on standard measures of global self-esteem than females, but the difference is small. Potential reasons for the small yet consistent effect size are discussed.

                Author and article information

                Front Psychiatry
                Front Psychiatry
                Front. Psychiatry
                Frontiers in Psychiatry
                Frontiers Media S.A.
                27 September 2019
                : 10
                : 698
                [1] 1Faculty of Public Health - Can Tho University of Medicine and Pharmacy , Can Tho City, Vietnam
                [2] 2Guelph International Health Consulting , Amsterdam, Netherlands
                [3] 3VU University Athena Institute, Faculty of Earth and Life Sciences, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Amsterdam, Netherlands
                Author notes

                Edited by: Roger C. Ho, National University of Singapore, Singapore

                Reviewed by: Leandro Da Costa Lane Valiengo, University of São Paulo, Brazil; Cyrus SH. Ho, National University Health System, Singapore

                *Correspondence: Dat Tan Nguyen, ntdat@ 123456ctump.edu.vn

                This article was submitted to Public Mental Health, a section of the journal Frontiers in Psychiatry

                †Present address: Christine Dedding, Amsterdam UMC, Medical Humanities, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Amsterdam, Netherlands

                Copyright © 2019 Nguyen, Wright, Dedding, Pham and Bunders

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

                : 24 November 2018
                : 28 August 2019
                Page count
                Figures: 0, Tables: 4, Equations: 0, References: 41, Pages: 7, Words: 3719
                Original Research

                Clinical Psychology & Psychiatry
                Clinical Psychology & Psychiatry
                self-esteem, anxiety, depression, suicide, adolescents, vietnam


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