Gender differences in self-reported symptoms of depression and anxiety in adults with intellectual disabilities

Rebecca Chester, Eddie Chaplin*, Elias Tsakanikos, Jane McCarthy, Nick Bouras, Tom Craig

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: This study aimed to examine for differences on how symptoms relating to depression and anxiety were reported by males and females with intellectual disability as part of the development of the Self-Assessment Intervention Package (SAINT), a guided self-help tool. Design/methodology/approach: Three self-report questionnaires were administered (The Glasgow Depression Scale - Learning Disabilities (GDS-LD)), Glasgow Anxiety Scale - Intellectual Disabilities (GAS-ID) and Self-Assessment Intervention Package (SAINT) to a group of people with mild intellectual disabilities (n=36), to allow comparison of symptom reporting between genders, in particular examining the SAINT across the two groups. Findings: Statistically significant differences in self-reported symptoms as assessed with SAINT were found between males and females. The symptoms where related mainly to mood and self-esteem. Overall, endorsement of self-reported depressive symptoms was between 2.7-3.2 times higher in female than male patients. Originality/value: There was evidence to suggest differences in self-report and symptom profiles of depression and anxiety of males and females with mild intellectual disabilities with females reporting higher in terms of symptoms using the SAINT. The SAINT is a valid tool for screening and self-reporting symptoms of anxiety and depression in people with intellectual disabilities. 

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)191-200
Number of pages10
JournalAdvances in Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2013


  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Disabilities
  • Gender
  • Intellectual disabilities
  • Self-report


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