Mental distress and sociodemographic variables: a study of Greek warship personnel

Mil Med. 2002 Nov;167(11):883-8.


Background: Mental disorders have been found to be the main cause of maladjustment and early discharge of the personnel in the Hellenic Navy and the armed forces in general. This study investigates the mental health status of a warship's military personnel by use of a widely used self-administered scale.

Methods: The 28-item Greek version of the General Health Questionnaire was administered to 281 men aboard a Greek warship to determine their mental health status and to examine possible associations with sociodemographic variables (rank, educational level, marital status).

Results: A high prevalence of General Health questionnaire cases (48.8%) was found which indicated conscripts as the group with the greater tendency for problems of adjustment and performance among the personnel of the warship. A negative association was found between educational level and psychological distress, whereas married subjects were found to have better levels of psychological well-being as defined by lower General Health questionnaire scores, compared with unmarried subjects.

Conclusions: Although a further methodological and more sophisticated inquiry is necessary, the findings of the present study could be useful for the design of mental health interventions in the naval and the military setting.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Educational Status
  • Greece
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Marital Status
  • Mental Health*
  • Military Personnel*
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Naval Medicine
  • Stress, Psychological*