Parents of Children With Neurodevelopmental Disorders: A Mixed Methods Approach to Understanding Quality of Life, Stress, and Perceived Social Support
Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD)
Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
Quality of life
MetadataShow full item record
AbstractObjective This study aims to investigate the quality of life (QOL), parental stress, and perception of social support in parents of children with neurodevelopmental disorders (NDD) in Saudi Arabia. Background Studies have shown that parenting a child with NDD impacts the QOL, parental stress, and life satisfaction of parents. Those studies, however, assessed those factors separately as well as focusing on autism spectrum disorder (ASD). This study will use a mixed methods approach to gain a deeper understanding of those three factors as they related to parenting a child with NDD. Method Data about parental stress, QOL, and other related sociodemographic variables were collected from parents of children with NDD (N= 63). Next, semi-structured interviews were conducted with four of those parents to gain a deeper understanding of the parents’ QOL, parental stress, and perception of social support. Results An analysis of variance (ANOVA) test demonstrated that parents who had children with severe symptoms had poorer QOL and higher levels of parental stress compared to parents who had children who had moderate and mild symptoms. In addition, parents who had children with ASD had poorer QOL compared to all of the other disorders. There was no statistically significant difference in QOL and parental stress between mothers and fathers. The thematic analysis highlighted that the most significant challenges they face are financial, familial, and well-being worries. Conclusion In conclusion, this study shows that parents of children with NDD exhibited higher levels of parental stress and lower levels of QOL depending on the diagnosis and intensity of the child’s symptoms. In addition, the interviews highlighted some key challenges that the parents felt affected their QOL and stress levels, as well as their views on family, friends, and community social support. Implications This study can help in developing or improving supportive programs and interventions for parents with children with NDD to enhance their QOL, reduce parental stress, and create a better social support system.
Journal titleCureus Journal of Medical Science