Depression and Associated Negative Stressors: The Collegiate Athlete vs. Non-Athlete

Tabitha A. Maurer & Dr. Joni L. Cramer Roh*, California University of Pennsylvania

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Abstract: Depression is a major medical concern among college students, and has recently become a crucial component in assessing and treating athletic-related injuries. The purpose of this literature review is to evaluate the current literature whether athletes or non-athletes experienced more depression symptoms, and what negative stressors lead to depression. The current research demonstrates that student-athletes suffer more psychological problems (anxiety, fear of failure in competition, lack of sleep, alcohol use and abuse, disordered eating, overtraining, and feelings of exhaustion) than their non-athlete peers due to the combination of stressful athletic and academic schedules. Female athletes, and athletes following a severe injury, had significantly higher levels of depression, yet athletes overall had a lower incidence of depression when compared to non-athletes.

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