A Structural Equation Modeling of the Relationships between Depression, Drug Abuse and Social Support with Suicidal Ideation among Soldiers in Iran in 2015

Mehdi Nosratabadi, Zohreh Halvaiepour


Background: Military service is a crucial period in the lives of young people and during this period soldier facing with multiple psychosocial problems.

Objectives: The present study aimed to explore structural analysis of the relationships between depression, drug abuse, social support and the risk of suicidal ideation among Military Medical University soldiers in Iran.

Methods: In the present correlational research, a sample of 176 soldiers, from three units, was selected using randomly stratified sampling. Data were collected through the Social Support Questionnaire (SSQ), the Beck Depression Inventory-II (BDI-II), the Beck Scale for Suicide Ideation (BSS) and the Possibility of Drug Abuse Scale (LDAS). Structural equation modeling was used to test the fit of the model, identify direct and indirect effects of the psychosocial correlates. Data were analyzed using the SPSS and AMOS software (Verson22).

Results: out of the whole subjects, 28.4% had suicidal ideation and 65.3% had degrees of depression (mild to severe). A significant reverse relationship was observed between social support and suicidal ideation (p<0.05). The strongest relationship was detected between drug abuse and suicidal ideation. The final structural model indicated that 74% of the variance in suicidal ideation was explained by the three examined variables of depression, social support and drug abuse.

Conclusions: The overall results showed that the risk of suicidal ideation, depression and drug abuse are relatively significant in Military Medical University soldiers requiring taking serious actions by the authorities and other relevant organizations in order to improve the psychosocial health status of these soldiers.


Suicide; Drug Abuse; Depression; Social Support

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