A COMPARISON OF MENTAL HEALTH, QUALITY OF LIFE, AND HAPPINESS IN MOTHERS OF CHILDREN WITH AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDERS VERSUS MOTHERS WITH HEALTHY CHILDRENAbstract
Introduction: Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are a group of mental problems that interfere with social interaction skills, and behavioral spectrum. ASDs are one of the most prevalent developmental disorders among children. The purpose of this study was to examine the mental health, quality of life, and happiness in mothers who had ASDs children and compare them with mothers having healthy children. Materials and Methods: This is a descriptive-analytic study. The population consisted of all mothers of children with autistic spectrum disorders (ASD) in Guilan province. The samples were determined through convenience sampling. We included 90 mothers whose children were identified with autism according to DSM5 criteria based on the clinical diagnosis of the child and adolescent psychiatrist and 90 mothers of children with no psychological complaint. The two groups were matched regarding demographic characteristics. The mothers of both groups completed a demographic questionnaire, the Symptom Checklist-90-R (SCL-90-R), the SF-36 Quality of Life Questionnaire, and the Oxford Happiness Questionnaire. The results were analyzed using descriptive statistics (i.e., mean, standard deviation) and inferential statistics (i.e., correlation and MANOVA). Results: There was a significant difference between the two groups regarding mental health components so that mental health was better in mothers with healthy children than those with ASD children (P<0.001). Also, quality-of-life components in mothers with healthy children were higher than that of mothers with autistic children (P<0.001). Finally, the average happiness in mothers with autistic children was lower than those with healthy children (P<0.001). Conclusion: Having a child with special needs imposes a heavy psychological burden on parents. In this regard, considering the educational programs for families of children with ASD, help to alleviate the problems of these families.
M. Kousha, R. Soleimani *, M. F. K.Masjedi, S. Hoshyarfard and A. Yhayazadeh
Department of Psychiatry, Kavosh Cognitive Behaviour Sciences and Addiction Research Center, Shafa Hospital, School of medicine, Guilan University of Medical Sciences, Rasht, Iran.
12 June 2018
01 August 2018
07 August 2018
01 February, 2019