Article Type

Original Study


Objectives The aim of this study was to estimate the prevalence of depression, anxiety, and obsessive–compulsive disorders among secondary school students and to assess the comorbidities of these disorders. Background Any type of mental illness can have a negative impact on cognitive development and learning and involves a very high cost to both the individual and society. Anxiety and depression can be considered reliable indicators for the assessment of mental illness in a community. Participants and methods From a total of 83 635 secondary school students in Menoufia Governorate during the academic year 2010–2011, using a multistage random sampling technique, a sample of 1373 students was selected and surveyed from March 2011 to April 2012 by means of the Beck Depression Inventory, 2nd ed., the Costello–Comrey Anxiety Scale, and the Obsessive–Compulsive Disorder Scale, all of which were answered by the participants. Those with scores higher than the cutoff values were interviewed by a psychiatrist for the final clinical diagnosis on the basis of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th ed. criteria. Results The prevalence of depressive symptoms was 21.5% for mild, 7.1% for moderate, and 0% for severe depression in this study group. The total prevalence of depressive symptoms was 28.6%, and the prevalence of depressive disorders was 11.3%. The prevalence of anxiety symptoms was 41.2% and that for anxiety disorders was 21%. The prevalence of obsessive–compulsive symptoms was 15.8% and that of obsessive–compulsive disorder was 2.7%. Comorbidities of mental disorders were common. Conclusion According to these findings, the high rate of mental disorders among adolescents in our community calls for more attention from the family and educational and health institutes. Comorbidities associated with mental disorders are common. In addition, assessment using screening is recommended.