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Increased prevalence of burnout symptoms in parents of chronically ill children
Örebro University, School of Health and Medical Sciences. Department of Pediatrics, Örebro University Hospital, Örebro, Sweden.
Örebro University, School of Health and Medical Sciences. Department of Pediatrics, Örebro University Hospital, Örebro, Sweden.
Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden.
2010 (English)In: Acta Paediatrica, ISSN 0803-5253, E-ISSN 1651-2227, Vol. 99, no 3, p. 427-432Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Aim: To examine the prevalence of burnout symptoms in the context of parenting a chronically ill child. Methods: A total of 252 parents of children with Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus and 38 parents of children with Inflammatory Bowel Diseases participated in a population-based study. A control group consisted of 124 randomly selected parents of healthy children. We used self-report questionnaires to assess symptoms of burnout. Results: The main finding was that significantly more parents of children with chronic diseases (36%) scored for clinical burnout, compared with parents of healthy children (20%). Burnout symptoms were most prominent among mothers of children with diabetes, although fathers of children with diabetes and mothers and fathers of children with inflammatory bowel diseases also reported higher levels of various burnout symptoms. Conclusion: Burnout may be a useful model for understanding long-term parental responses and should be acknowledged among the different types of psychological consequences of the multi-faceted experience of parenting a child with chronic illness. Gender seems to influence the risk of burnout symptoms. Continued research about other background factors, and how the parents' situation changes over time are warranted. In the clinic, we need to draw attention to the group of parents who may suffer from burnout.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. Vol. 99, no 3, p. 427-432
Keyword [en]
Burnout, Childhood, Inflammatory bowel disease, Parents, Stress, Type 1 Diabetes
National Category
General Practice
Research subject
Family Medicine
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-13026DOI: 10.1111/j.1651-2227.2009.01586.xISI: 000274147200023PubMedID: 19912139Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-77249139238OAI: oai:DiVA.org:oru-13026DiVA: diva2:382759
Available from: 2011-01-03 Created: 2011-01-03 Last updated: 2018-01-12Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Burnout in parents of chronically ill children
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Burnout in parents of chronically ill children
2016 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Parents of children with a chronic disease are usually highly involved in their child’s treatment and may be affected by the heavy demands and constant stress. This can increase the risk of developing burnout, which is an individual reaction to long-term stress consisting of symptoms associated with emotional exhaustion, as well as physical and cognitive fatigue. The overall aim was to estimate the prevalence of burnout in parents of children with Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus (T1DM) and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) (paper I), identify the risk factors associated with parenting a child with T1DM (paper II), explore how mothers suffering from burnout describe their mothering of a child with diabetes, with special focus on their need for control and Performance-based self-esteem (PBSE) (paper IV), and to evaluate the effect of a group intervention aimed at reducing stress-related symptoms (paper III). A total of 251 parents of children with T1DM, 38 parents of children with IBD and 124 parents of healthy children participated in a population-based study (I, II). The validated Shirom-Melamed Burnout Questionnaire (SMBQ) was used to assess burnout. 16 parents (SMBQ ≥3.75) participated in a group intervention and were evaluated for changes in SMBQ and PBSE (III). A total of 21 mothers of children with T1DM who scored for clinical burnout (SMBQ) participated in a qualitative study. Semi-structured interviews were conducted and Inductive content analysis was used (IV). In the study group 36.0% parents of children with a chronic disease scored for clinical burnout (SMBQ ≥3.75) compared to 20.2% of the reference parents (p=0.001) with a preponderance of mothers compared to fathers, 42% vs. 20.5% (p=0.001), respectively (I). Less support from the social network, sleep disturbances and lack of personal leisure time and recovery seem to be important risk factors for clinical burnout in parents of children with T1DM, especially mothers (II). Mothers’ experiences of mothering a child with T1DM were interpreted as one theme; Mission impossible, illustrating the extremely difficult circumstances under which they bring up the child with diabetes to adulthood (IV). Parents’ subjective evaluation of the intervention group was mainly positive and SMBQ (p=0.01) and PBSE scale (p= 0.04) measurements were significantly reduced 6 months after completion of the intervention (III). It is important to pay attention to how parents and especially mothers experience their daily life in order to support those who are at risk of developing burnout.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Örebro: Örebro university, 2016. p. 101
Series
Örebro Studies in Medicine, ISSN 1652-4063 ; 131
Keyword
Burnout, long-term stress, parents, children, chronic illness, T1DM, IBD, intervention group
National Category
General Practice
Research subject
Family Medicine
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-47391 (URN)978-91-7529-116-1 (ISBN)
Public defence
2016-02-19, Universitetssjukhuset, Wilandersalen, Södra Grev Rosengatan, Örebro, 09:00 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2016-01-13 Created: 2016-01-13 Last updated: 2018-01-10Bibliographically approved

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