Thinking Styles and Coping when Caring for a Child with Severe Spina Bifida

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This study now designed to identify the cognitive dimensions involved in coping and the psychological adjustment of parents of children with myelomeningocele. The study included 118 adults who were parents of children diagnosed with myelomeningocele. Comparison of means and regression analyses were performed to analyze variables and their contribution to parental adjustment. Significant differences were found for four thinking styles; coping based on Seeking Social Support and Positive Reappraisal was used frequently. The Internally Focused thinking style contributed the most to adjustment. The thinking styles identified help to detect stable responses associated with caring for children with myelomeningocele. Such responses may be good indicators of the way parents cope with their situation, allowing us to determine their adaptive efficacy and shedding light on designing interventions targeted at enhancing development of coping strategies in these kinds of situations.

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