The Impact of Mental Wellness on HIV Self-Management

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As people living with HIV age, they face increasing self-management work related to HIV infection plus the prevention and mitigation of multiple chronic health conditions, including daily health practices (i.e., physical activity, nutrition), engaging in a supportive community, and accepting the chronicity of HIV. Our purpose was to describe the relationship between HIV self-management practices and mental wellness (depressive symptoms, perceived stress). Ninety-three adult people living with HIV on antiretroviral therapy were enrolled and completed a survey. We used descriptive statistics to summarize variables, and Spearman rank correlation and quantile regression to study associations between variables. Participants’ average age was 48.6 years, 56% were male, and 87% were African American. Daily self-management practices were associated with depressive symptoms (r = −0.19; p ≤ .01) and perceived stress (r = −0.14; p = .06); engaging with a supportive community and accepting the chronicity of HIV were not associated with mental wellness (all p > .05).

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