Instructional video for collecting saliva samples (Video instructivo para recolectar muestras de saliva)
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The Stress and Spit Study aims to measure differences in stress between and within Latino undocumented and documented immigrant families. Although family stress can lead to serious health problems such as mental health disorders or substance use issues, little is known about stress within Latino immigrant parent-U.S. born adolescent dyads. Stress can be measured through self-reported surveys or through biological markers, such as cortisol. The use of surveys is beneficial to understanding associations between different types of stress. However, measuring cortisol levels through the collection of participants’ saliva samples can more accurately examine chronic stress and stress regulation within vulnerable families. To collect saliva samples, instructional videos were created in both English and Spanish to meet the needs of the study population. Alongside the UH Instructional Design team, three HOUSTON Academy students, consisting of one English speaker, one Spanish speaker, and one actor, assisted with creating the videos. The videos were then published to YouTube and are shown to participants during data collection events. Currently, research assistants have been scheduling a day and time to retrieve the saliva samples and collection diaries from participants within 48 hours of completion. Samples will be kept in a freezer at UH prior to cortisol analysis. This data can potentially be used to inform psychosocial intervention and prevention programs for Latino immigrant families. This project was completed with contributions from Geselle Zuniga from Texas Southern University and Laura Gonzalez from Rice University.