Acute and chronic stress among workers in residential treatment centers for youth : effects on restraint and seclusion
Article [Accepted Manuscript]
Is part ofChildren and youth services review ; vol. 118.
Workers in residential treatment centers for youth are often victims of violence, including verbally and physically aggressive behavior. Restraint and seclusion (R&S) are the last-resort methods used by residential workers to deal with the aggressive behavior of youths. However, their use has been found to contribute to building negative interactions between residential workers and youths, which can escalate to violence. To better understand the factors contributing to the use of R&S, the objective of this study was to investigate the effects of acute and chronic stress of workers as measured by psychological and physiological markers on the use of R&S in residential treatment for youth from an exploratory perspective. The data used for this study were collected from 70 workers in residential treatment centers for youths in Montreal, Canada, using questionnaires for chronic stress and salivary cortisol as measure of acute stress. Results revealed non-significant correlations and a lack of pattern in the longitudinal analyses between R&S and acute or chronic stress measures. Bayesian analyses were computed to assess the evidential value of the non-significant results. These results suggest that workers’ stress may not be a significant factor associated with the use of R&S in residential treatment centers for youth.