Supporting parents of children with chronic conditions : a randomized controlled trial of web-based and self-help ACT interventions
Lappalainen, P., Pakkala, I., Strömmer, J., Sairanen, E., Kaipainen, K., & Lappalainen, R. (2021). Supporting parents of children with chronic conditions : a randomized controlled trial of web-based and self-help ACT interventions. Internet Interventions, 24, Article 100382. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.invent.2021.100382
Published inInternet Interventions
© 2021 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V.
Objective Many parents of children with chronic conditions and developmental disabilities experience high rates of burnout and psychological distress. The aim of the current study was to examine the effects of two differently delivered interventions based on acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) on symptoms of burnout, depression, quality of life, psychological flexibility, and mindfulness skills. Method A total of 110 parents of children aged 0.8 to 17 years with chronic conditions and developmental disabilities participated in a randomized controlled trial lasting 13 weeks with two intervention groups: (1) an iACT intervention, including three psychologist-led video conferencing sessions, and (2) a self-help ACT, which received self-help material: an ACT-based booklet with the possibility of using ACT-based online exercises. Results For the main outcome measure burnout, a similar decrease was found in both groups. The supported iACT intervention produced significantly larger improvements in depressive symptoms (d = 0.49), psychological flexibility (d = 0.64), and mindfulness (d = 0.55) compared to the self-help ACT intervention. For health-related quality of life, only the dimension of role limitations caused by emotional problems showed a significant difference in favor of the supported iACT (d = 0.58). Conclusions The results suggest that the iACT intervention including three video conferencing sessions with a psychologist produced broader improvements in parents' psychological well-being than the self-help ACT. Overall, Internet-delivered interventions and video conferencing technology may offer a feasible alternative to psychological support and self-care for parents of children with chronic conditions. Further research is needed to investigate the long-term effects of the current delivery models. ...
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Related funder(s)Social Insurance Institution of Finland
Additional information about fundingFunding for this project was provided by the Social Insurance Institution of Finland (Kela), grant number 18/26/2018.
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