Depression and Behavioral Problems Among Adolescent Girls and Young Women Employees of the Textile Industry in India

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Abstract

Stress and depression are common in textile industry employees due to inadequate working conditions and challenging socioeconomic conditions. The objective of the study was to assess depression and mental health among adolescent and young females currently employed in a textile factory located in Tamil Nadu compared with past employees and women who have never been employed. This cross-sectional study included a total of 107 participants in each study group who were interviewed. The Patient Health Questionnaire–9 and Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire were administered to screen participants for depression and mental health. More current employees (16.82%) and past employees (15.88%) suffered from depression severe enough to require treatment compared with never employed girls and young women (2.8%). Of the study participants, 59.8% of current employees, 63.6% of past employees, and 32.7% of never employed women had mental health or behavior problems. In the regression model, history of abuse was significantly associated with depression. Participants who were current employees and reported family debt and a history of abuse were significantly more likely to have mental health or behavior problems. Mental health issues such as depression and behavior problems were more likely among adolescent girls currently employed in textile industries. Further studies into the causes of this phenomenon are needed.

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