The Prediction Of Alexithymia Using Depression, Anxiety, Stress, And Demographics In Undergraduate Students


Aims: Alexithymia is a psychiatric disorder in which people become emotionally frustrated. This study aims to model the role of depression, anxiety, and stress in alexithymia prediction.

Materials and Methods: In this cross-sectional study, 260 undergraduate students were selected via multi-stage cluster sampling. The Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20) and depression, anxiety and stress scale have been used to collect data. The association between qualitative variables was examined using Chi-square test and LASSO logistic regression was fitted for alexithymia prediction.

Results: The mean± SD of participants’ age was 20.7± 3.2 years. Of all, 197 (75.8%) students were female and 236 (90.8%) were single. According to the cutoff point for TAS-20, 30.8% of the students displayed signs of alexithymia. The rate of alexithymia was significantly higher among males (42.9% versus 26.9%, P=0.02) and among nursing (45.9%) and anesthesia (44.8%) students than other undergraduate students. The proportion of students with anxiety, depression, and stress were 45.0%, 15.8%, and 9.2%, respectively. 51.2% of the depressed students had alexithymia, while only 26.9% of non-depressed students were alexithymic (P=0.002). LASSO logistic regression showed that odds of alexithymia was significantly higher among male students (OR=1.40, 95% CI=1.03, 1.90), students with depression (OR=1.73, 95% CI=1.18, 2.54), students who had anxiety (OR=1.42, 95% CI=1.07, 1.89), and nursing students (OR=1.62, 95% CI=1.07, 2.45).

Conclusion: The results of this study indicate the importance role of anxiety and depression in predicting alexithymia. Due to the high prevalence of alexithymia among college students, we suggest the routine evaluation of college students for alexithymia.

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Alexithymia Anxiety Depression Stress Undergraduates

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Darvishi A, Sanjari E, Shahraki H. The Prediction Of Alexithymia Using Depression, Anxiety, Stress, And Demographics In Undergraduate Students. JBE. 2022;8(4):435-444.