Academic journal article Ife Psychologia

Socio-Demographic Variables as Predictors of Psychological Well-Being Amongst the Adolescents with Hearing Impairment in Southwest Nigeria

Academic journal article Ife Psychologia

Socio-Demographic Variables as Predictors of Psychological Well-Being Amongst the Adolescents with Hearing Impairment in Southwest Nigeria

Article excerpt

Abstract

Studies on the psychological well-being of adolescents with hearing impairment are generally scanty and have not sufficiently addressed socio-demographic variables of interest on the psychological well-being of such adolescents. This study, therefore, investigated the relative contributions and predictive value of age, gender and socio-economic status on psychological Well-being of adolescents with hearing impairment in southwest, Nigeria. The study adopted survey research design of ex-post facto type. Purposive sampling was used to select eight senior secondary schools and 491 adolescents with hearing impairment using a battery operated audiometer. Two validated instruments were used to gather data for the study. Two research questions were answered. Data were analysed using multiple regression analysis. Two (Age- B= .309; t = 1.250; p>.05 and Gender-B= 1.961; t = 1.241; p>.05) of the three independent variables could lowly predict psychological well being, while Socio-Economic Status (B= -.214; t = 1.076; p>.05) has a discordant prediction to psychological well being. Age and gender made significant contributions that are, even though, low but Socio-Economic Status accounted for the least contribution towards psychological well being. Hearing impaired adolescents and their managers be exposed to training workshops on positive development of age and gender. Counselling psychologists and special educators via this finding should provide a strong basis for bridging the gap in past research on the concreteness and gravity of psychological well-being among the hearing impaired adolescents in southwestern Nigeria.

Key words: Psychological well-being, Adolescents, Hearing impairment, Age, Gender

Introduction

Early developmental theorists such as Erick Erikson, Piaget and others have defined the period of adolescence as one of identity versus role confusion, in which adolescents must determine who they are, combining their self understanding and social rules into a coherent identity (Berger & Thompson, 1995). Essentially, adolescents venture towards establishing their own goals and values, while at the same time leaving behind the goals and values established by their parents or society with the ultimate goal being identity achievement (Erikson, 1968). The identity status is characterised by the presence or absence of a critical period of exploration with personal adolescent involvement in the areas of ideology, beliefs and values crisis (Atwater, 1992). Adolescence stage is thus the period of experimentation and rebelliousness as adolescents attempt to progress towards their identity in figuring out who they want to become.

However, adolescents with hearing impairment often face more than the problem of acceptance, in that they desire to escape from the prejudices and discriminations that have had the effect of casting them into a minority (Nagler, 1992). In this light, adolescents with hearing impairment could also be confronted with some challenges like social alienation, self-pity and rejection, emotional damage and withdrawal symptom as well as stigmatisation; which could have effects on their psychological well-being (Nagler, 1992).

Meanwhile, adolescent's psychological well-being is critically important. Ward (2004) broadly defines well-being as various psychological, emotional, and physical health and wellness. Young, Miller, Norton and Hill (1995) use life satisfaction as the outcome variable, describing it a feeling of well-being with one's self and life circumstances. Flouri (2004) uses the term subjective well-being to reflect a person's evaluation of his or her life. He operationalizes three aspects which include life satisfaction, psychological functioning, and psychological distress. Keyes, Shmotkin and Ryff (2002) distinguish subjective well-being from psychological well-being by stating that subjective well-being is evaluation of life in terms of satisfaction and balance between positive and negative affect, while psychological well-being entails perception of engagement with existential challenges of life. …

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