Do male university students sleep well when they feel well? Exploring the role of depression and anxiety as mediators
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The deterioration of sleep quality (SQ) can be a manifestation of mental health issues and lack of Self-Esteem (SE), especially in men, who express their mental discomfort in ways that can be distinct from those of women. The present study sought to examine whether depressive symptoms and trait anxiety mediate the association between SE and SQ in male university students. 142 university students were evaluated using the Rosenberg Self-Esteem scale, the Beck Depression Inventory, the Spielberger Trait Anxiety Inventory, and the Pittsburg Quality Sleep Index. The analysis was based on the Baron and Kenny four steps mediation model, and explored the potential mediator role of depression and trait anxiety through a series of simple and multiple linear regression analyses, followed by a Sobel test to corroborate the model’s power. Our results showed that the association between SE and SQ is partially mediated by depression and trait anxiety. Such findings may indicate that both depression and trait anxiety contribute to the underlying mechanism through which SE influences SQ in male university students. Clinical and educational implications are discussed in the light of such results, proposing interventions to ameliorate the male students’ emotional life and sleep quality.