Parental Well-Being and Behavioral Adjustment of Pediatric Survivors of Burns

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Abstract

Parents of pediatric patients with burns often perceive their children as troubled and having an increased number of problem behaviors. This study examines the relationship between these problem behaviors and the parent's own emotional well-being. Mothers of 38 burned children completed three standardized questionnaires: Child Behavior Checklist, Parental Stress Index, and the Eight State Questionnaire. The population was further divided into troubled and untroubled by a Child Behavior Checklist total problem T score of 60. Parents were not significantly different from reference populations on most of the scales. However, the Parental Stress Index results revealed that parents who report their children as troubled are themselves stressed, not only by their children's behaviors but in areas unrelated to their children. In addition, these mothers report often feeling depressed and guilty on the Eight State Questionnaire. This study emphasizes the need for psychological assessment of both parents and children.

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