Why Does Disaster Recovery Work Influence Mental Health?

Pathways through Physical Health and Household Income

Sarah Lowe, Richard K. Kwok, Julianne Payne, Lawrence S. Engel, Sandro Galea, Dale P. Sandler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Disaster recovery work increases risk for mental health problems, yet the mechanisms underlying this association are unclear. We explored links from recovery work to post-traumatic stress (PTS), major depression (MD), and generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) symptoms through physical health symptoms and household income in the aftermath of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. As part of the NIEHS GuLF STUDY, participants (N = 10,141) reported on cleanup work activities, spill-related physical health symptoms, and household income at baseline, and mental health symptoms an average of 14.69 weeks (SD = 16.79) thereafter. Cleanup work participation was associated with higher physical health symptoms, which in turn were associated with higher PTS, MD, and GAD symptoms. Similar pattern of results were found in models including workers only and investigating the influence of longer work duration and higher work-related oil exposure on mental health symptoms. In addition, longer worker duration and higher work-related oil exposure were associated with higher household income, which in turn was associated with lower MD and GAD symptoms. These findings suggest that physical health symptoms contribute to workers’ risk for mental health symptoms, while higher household income, potentially from more extensive work, might mitigate risk.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)354-364
Number of pages11
JournalAmerican Journal of Community Psychology
Volume58
Issue number3-4
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2016

Fingerprint

Disasters
household income
disaster
Mental Health
mental health
Health
health
Anxiety Disorders
Depression
anxiety
worker
Oils
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (U.S.)
Petroleum Pollution
participation

Keywords

  • Deepwater Horizon oil spill
  • Disaster recovery work
  • Generalized anxiety
  • Income
  • Major depression
  • Path analysis
  • Physical health
  • Post-traumatic stress

Cite this

Lowe, Sarah ; Kwok, Richard K. ; Payne, Julianne ; Engel, Lawrence S. ; Galea, Sandro ; Sandler, Dale P. / Why Does Disaster Recovery Work Influence Mental Health? Pathways through Physical Health and Household Income. In: American Journal of Community Psychology. 2016 ; Vol. 58, No. 3-4. pp. 354-364.
@article{879ce098d35a4d93a2c353d26e875256,
title = "Why Does Disaster Recovery Work Influence Mental Health?: Pathways through Physical Health and Household Income",
abstract = "Disaster recovery work increases risk for mental health problems, yet the mechanisms underlying this association are unclear. We explored links from recovery work to post-traumatic stress (PTS), major depression (MD), and generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) symptoms through physical health symptoms and household income in the aftermath of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. As part of the NIEHS GuLF STUDY, participants (N = 10,141) reported on cleanup work activities, spill-related physical health symptoms, and household income at baseline, and mental health symptoms an average of 14.69 weeks (SD = 16.79) thereafter. Cleanup work participation was associated with higher physical health symptoms, which in turn were associated with higher PTS, MD, and GAD symptoms. Similar pattern of results were found in models including workers only and investigating the influence of longer work duration and higher work-related oil exposure on mental health symptoms. In addition, longer worker duration and higher work-related oil exposure were associated with higher household income, which in turn was associated with lower MD and GAD symptoms. These findings suggest that physical health symptoms contribute to workers’ risk for mental health symptoms, while higher household income, potentially from more extensive work, might mitigate risk.",
keywords = "Deepwater Horizon oil spill, Disaster recovery work, Generalized anxiety, Income, Major depression, Path analysis, Physical health, Post-traumatic stress",
author = "Sarah Lowe and Kwok, {Richard K.} and Julianne Payne and Engel, {Lawrence S.} and Sandro Galea and Sandler, {Dale P.}",
year = "2016",
month = "12",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1002/ajcp.12091",
language = "English",
volume = "58",
pages = "354--364",
journal = "American Journal of Community Psychology",
issn = "0091-0562",
publisher = "Wiley-Blackwell",
number = "3-4",

}

Why Does Disaster Recovery Work Influence Mental Health? Pathways through Physical Health and Household Income. / Lowe, Sarah; Kwok, Richard K.; Payne, Julianne; Engel, Lawrence S.; Galea, Sandro; Sandler, Dale P.

In: American Journal of Community Psychology, Vol. 58, No. 3-4, 01.12.2016, p. 354-364.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Why Does Disaster Recovery Work Influence Mental Health?

T2 - Pathways through Physical Health and Household Income

AU - Lowe, Sarah

AU - Kwok, Richard K.

AU - Payne, Julianne

AU - Engel, Lawrence S.

AU - Galea, Sandro

AU - Sandler, Dale P.

PY - 2016/12/1

Y1 - 2016/12/1

N2 - Disaster recovery work increases risk for mental health problems, yet the mechanisms underlying this association are unclear. We explored links from recovery work to post-traumatic stress (PTS), major depression (MD), and generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) symptoms through physical health symptoms and household income in the aftermath of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. As part of the NIEHS GuLF STUDY, participants (N = 10,141) reported on cleanup work activities, spill-related physical health symptoms, and household income at baseline, and mental health symptoms an average of 14.69 weeks (SD = 16.79) thereafter. Cleanup work participation was associated with higher physical health symptoms, which in turn were associated with higher PTS, MD, and GAD symptoms. Similar pattern of results were found in models including workers only and investigating the influence of longer work duration and higher work-related oil exposure on mental health symptoms. In addition, longer worker duration and higher work-related oil exposure were associated with higher household income, which in turn was associated with lower MD and GAD symptoms. These findings suggest that physical health symptoms contribute to workers’ risk for mental health symptoms, while higher household income, potentially from more extensive work, might mitigate risk.

AB - Disaster recovery work increases risk for mental health problems, yet the mechanisms underlying this association are unclear. We explored links from recovery work to post-traumatic stress (PTS), major depression (MD), and generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) symptoms through physical health symptoms and household income in the aftermath of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. As part of the NIEHS GuLF STUDY, participants (N = 10,141) reported on cleanup work activities, spill-related physical health symptoms, and household income at baseline, and mental health symptoms an average of 14.69 weeks (SD = 16.79) thereafter. Cleanup work participation was associated with higher physical health symptoms, which in turn were associated with higher PTS, MD, and GAD symptoms. Similar pattern of results were found in models including workers only and investigating the influence of longer work duration and higher work-related oil exposure on mental health symptoms. In addition, longer worker duration and higher work-related oil exposure were associated with higher household income, which in turn was associated with lower MD and GAD symptoms. These findings suggest that physical health symptoms contribute to workers’ risk for mental health symptoms, while higher household income, potentially from more extensive work, might mitigate risk.

KW - Deepwater Horizon oil spill

KW - Disaster recovery work

KW - Generalized anxiety

KW - Income

KW - Major depression

KW - Path analysis

KW - Physical health

KW - Post-traumatic stress

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84994805983&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1002/ajcp.12091

DO - 10.1002/ajcp.12091

M3 - Article

VL - 58

SP - 354

EP - 364

JO - American Journal of Community Psychology

JF - American Journal of Community Psychology

SN - 0091-0562

IS - 3-4

ER -