The effects of parental illness and other ill family members on the adjustment of children

Pakenham, Kenneth I. & Cox, Stephen (2014) The effects of parental illness and other ill family members on the adjustment of children. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 48(3), pp. 424-437.

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Abstract

Background

This study addresses limitations of prior research that have used group comparison designs to test the effects of parental illness on youth.

Purpose

This study examined differences in adjustment between children of a parent with illness and peers from ‘healthy’ families controlling for the effects of whether a parent or non-parent family member is ill, illness type, demographics and caregiving.

Methods

Based on questionnaire data, groups were derived from a community sample of 2,474 youth (‘healthy’ family, n = 1768; parental illness, n = 336; other family member illness, n = 254; both parental and other family illness, n = 116).

Results

The presence of any family member with an illness is associated with greater risk of mental health difficulties for youth relative to peers from healthy families. This risk is elevated if the ill family member is a parent and has mental illness or substance misuse.

Conclusions

Serious health problems within a household adversely impact youth adjustment.

Impact and interest:

6 citations in Scopus
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5 citations in Web of Science®

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Full-text downloads:

12 since deposited on 24 Jun 2015
6 in the past twelve months

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ID Code: 84985
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: parental illness, family health, young carers, youth caregiving, youth adjustment
DOI: 10.1007/s12160-014-9622-y
ISSN: 1532-4796
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES (170000)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES (170000) > PSYCHOLOGY (170100) > Health Clinical and Counselling Psychology (170106)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > QUT Business School
Funding:
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2014 The Society of Behavioral Medicine
Copyright Statement: The final publication is available at Springer via http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12160-014-9622-y
Deposited On: 24 Jun 2015 23:18
Last Modified: 04 Jan 2016 16:53

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