Introduction Mental well-being is the main element in neurobehavioral status of the drivers’ organism that determine the efficiency and reliability of his professional activity. Psychic adaptation in the system ‘Driver – vehicle – traffic environment’ is considered to be a process, which provides the optimal accordance between a person and environment during the driving. This study was designed to estimate the psychoemotional status (PES), to compare the prevalence of psychoadaptive disorders among professional lorry-drivers in connexion with their age, occupational hazards, work schedule and driving experience.
Methods 150 professional lorry-drivers (men aged 30–59 years) were examined using a clinical questionnaire to identify, estimate and compare neurotic states according to 6 scales of anxiety, neurotic depression, asthenia, hysterical type of reacting, obsessive-phobic disorders and neurovegetative disturbances.
Results The study comprised drivers with stable psychic adaptation (58% of those under study), drivers with unstable psychic adaptation – a risk group (34%), and drivers with stable psychic disadaptation, i.e. with borderline mental disorders (BMD) – 8%, respectively. The predominance of drivers with unstable psychic adaptation and BMD was found: χ2(2)=7.45, p<0.05. As factor-disperse analysis showed the variability of psychoemotional imbalance levels in lorry-drivers was found to be due to a combination of the following factors: occupational exposure (F(2,12)=100.6, p<0.001) and shiftwork (F(2,12)=34.16, p<0.001). Comparative analysis of psychoadaptive disorders revealed the prevalence of the asthenic symptoms (F(1)=10.503, p<0.01), anxious and depressive manifestations (F(1)=7.509, p<0.01), hysterical reactions (F(1)=6.040, p<0.05) among professional lorry-drivers.
Conclusion The presented results showed the occupational hazards and long driving experience being the risk factors for the development of psychic disadaptation and BMD among professional lorry-drivers. The applied parameters of PES and early manifestations of BMD are informative criteria for assessing the mental well-being, life quality and professional suitability of lorry-drivers.
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