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Nursing Research and Practice
Volume 2016 (2016), Article ID 5843256, 11 pages
Research Article

The Impact of Perceived Stress and Coping Adequacy on the Health of Nurses: A Pilot Investigation

1The University of Toledo, Toledo, OH 43606, USA
2Ball State University, Muncie, IN 47306, USA
3Department of Health Sciences, Lock Haven University, Lock Haven, PA 17745, USA

Received 30 April 2016; Revised 27 July 2016; Accepted 14 September 2016

Academic Editor: Kathleen Finlayson

Copyright © 2016 Timothy R. Jordan et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Stress and coping abilities influence the health and work performance of nurses. However, little is known about the combined influence of stress perception and perceived coping adequacy and its impact on the health of nurses. This study examined the relationship between stress, coping, and the combined influences of perceived stress and coping abilities on health and work performance. A valid and reliable questionnaire was completed by 120 nurses in a Midwestern hospital in the USA. In general, the nurses were not healthy: 92% had moderate-to-very high stress levels; 78% slept less than 8 hours of sleep per night; 69% did not exercise regularly; 63% consumed less than 5 servings of fruits and vegetables per day; and 22% were classified as binge drinkers. When confronted with workplace stress, 70% of nurses reported that they consumed more junk food and 63% reported that they consumed more food than usual as a way of coping. Nurses in the “high stress/poor coping” group had the poorest health outcomes and highest health risk behaviors compared to those in other groups. The combined variables of perceived stress and perceived coping adequacy influenced the health of nurses. Therefore, worksite health promotion programs for nurses should focus equally on stress reduction, stress management, and the development of healthy coping skills.