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Dev Psychol. 2017 Feb;53(2):340-352. doi: 10.1037/dev0000235. Epub 2016 Nov 28.

Does anger regulation mediate the discrimination-mental health link among Mexican-origin adolescents? A longitudinal mediation analysis using multilevel modeling.

Author information

1
Department of Psychiatry, Indiana University School of Medicine - South Bend.
2
Department of Psychology, University of Notre Dame.
3
Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.
4
Disparities Research Unit, Department of Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital.

Abstract

[Correction Notice: An Erratum for this article was reported in Vol 53(2) of Developmental Psychology (see record 2017-04475-001). In the article, there were several typographical errors in the Recruitment and Procedures section. The percentage of mothers who responded to survey items should have been 99.3%. Additionally, the youths surveyed at T2 and T3 should have been n 246. Accordingly, the percentage of youths surveyed in T2 and T3 should have been 91.4% and the percentage of mothers surveyed at T2 and T3 should have been 90.7%. Finally, the youths missing at T2 should have been n 23, and therefore the attrition rate for youth participants should have been 8.6. All versions of this article have been corrected.] Although prior research has consistently documented the association between racial/ethnic discrimination and poor mental health outcomes, the mechanisms that underlie this link are still unclear. The present 3-wave longitudinal study tested the mediating role of anger regulation in the discrimination-mental health link among 269 Mexican-origin adolescents (Mage = 14.1 years, SD = 1.6; 57% girls), 12 to 17 years old. Three competing anger regulation variables were tested as potential mediators: outward anger expression, anger suppression, and anger control. Longitudinal mediation analyses were conducted using multilevel modeling that disaggregated within-person effects from between-person effects. Results indicated that outward anger expression was a significant mediator; anger suppression and anger control were not significant mediators. Within a given individual, greater racial/ethnic discrimination was associated with more frequent outward anger expression. In turn, more frequent outward anger expression was associated with higher levels of anxiety and depression at a given time point. Gender, age, and nativity status were not significant moderators of the hypothesized mediation models. By identifying outward anger expression as an explanatory mechanism in the discrimination-distress link among Latino youths, this study points to a malleable target for prevention and intervention efforts aimed at mitigating the detrimental impact of racism on Latino youths' mental health during the developmentally critical period of adolescence. (PsycINFO Database Record.

PMID:
27893238
PMCID:
PMC5293666
DOI:
10.1037/dev0000235
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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