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Posttraumatic stress symptomatology following exposure to perceived traumatic perinatal events within the midwifery profession: The impact of trait emotional intelligence

Nightingale, S, Spiby, H, Sheen, KS and Slade, P (2018) Posttraumatic stress symptomatology following exposure to perceived traumatic perinatal events within the midwifery profession: The impact of trait emotional intelligence. Journal of Advanced Nursing. ISSN 0309-2402

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Abstract

Aims: To explore factors associated with, and predictors of, posttraumatic stress symptoms in midwives. To explore factors associated with, and potential moderating effects of, trait emotional intelligence. Secondary analysis explored predictors of resilience.
Background: Midwives may experience vicarious trauma responses due to exposure to certain perinatal events in their professional lives. This may have adverse psychological outcomes for midwives, and women and children in their care.
Design: A cross‐sectional, online and paper survey of midwives in the United Kingdom was conducted.
Methods: Between February and October 2016, 113 midwives who met inclusion criteria provided demographic information, and completed scales measuring posttraumatic stress symptoms, trait emotional intelligence, empathy, resilience, social support, and attitudes towards emotional expression.
Results: Higher resilience and trait emotional intelligence scores were associated with reduced posttraumatic stress symptoms. Higher empathy, perceived social support, and resilience were associated with higher trait emotional intelligence. Lower resilience significantly predicted posttraumatic stress symptoms. Trait emotional intelligence did not moderate relationships between resilience and posttraumatic stress symptoms, but may protect against posttraumatic stress symptoms in midwives with higher empathy. Higher trait emotional intelligence, and lower empathy and need for support, significantly predicted resilience. Notably, when trait emotional intelligence was higher, the negative relationship between empathy and resilience was reduced.
Conclusion: Approximately one‐fifth of midwives were experiencing posttraumatic stress symptoms at clinically significant levels. Trait emotional intelligence may protect against posttraumatic stress symptoms by supporting resilience, while enabling midwives to remain empathic. The negative correlation between resilience and empathy needs careful consideration by policy makers.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Nightingale S, Spiby H, Sheen K, Slade P. Posttraumatic stress symptomatology following exposure to perceived traumatic perinatal events within the midwifery profession: The impact of trait emotional intelligence. J Adv Nurs. 2018;74:2115–2125., which has been published in final form at http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jan.13719 This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Use of Self-Archived Versions.
Uncontrolled Keywords: 1110 Nursing
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RG Gynecology and obstetrics
R Medicine > RT Nursing
Divisions: Natural Sciences and Psychology
Publisher: Wiley
Date Deposited: 26 Oct 2018 09:57
Last Modified: 26 Oct 2018 16:27
DOI or Identification number: 10.1111/jan.13719
URI: http://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/8988

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