Maternal Distress Among Jordanian Mothers Caring for Children with Cancer in Jordan

Alia I. Mahadeen, Diana H. Arabiat, Raghad H. Abdelkader, Ayman M. Hamdan-Mansour

Abstract


Objectives: The purpose of this study was to investigate the psychological and mental health among the Jordanian mothers caring for children with cancer.

Material and Methods: A descriptive correlational design utilized to collect data from 37 women caring for their children who are diagnosed with cancer.

Results: The analysis revealed that mothers of children with cancer had a moderate level of depression and stress, and a severe level of anxiety. There was significant correlation among the three variables (r>.80, p < .001). Anxiety level was significantly different in relation to marital status (F 1, 4= 4.37, p = 0.007). Only 38% of the children know their illness. The results also showed that there is a negative and significant correlation between the level of child’s knowledge about his illness and stress (BTAU=- .29, p= .03) and anxiety (BTAU= - .34, p= .01).

Conclusion: The study infers that mothers of children with cancer are suffering multiple psychological and mental health problems. Informing children with cancer about their illness appeared to be a significant contributor in lowering the children's anxiety level. Thus, health care professional should collaborate to enhance information exchange and target mothers of children with cancer in their psychosocial programs that will reflect positively on the psychological status of the mothers and children diagnosed with cancer. The study also concludes that mental health counseling for mothers and children diagnosed with cancer is an essential component of the quality of health care that requires more attention in research and practice.

Keywords


Anxiety, Cancer, Children, Depression, Maternal Stress

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