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Title: Effectiveness of relaxation training for anxiety and depression in family caregivers of long-term stroke survivors
Author: Csecs, Jenny
ISNI:       0000 0004 7972 3315
Awarding Body: University of Surrey
Current Institution: University of Surrey
Date of Award: 2019
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Objectives: Anxiety and depression are commonly experienced by caregivers of stroke survivors. However, interventions which directly target mood are limited and no recommendations for treatment of anxiety and depression of caregivers of stroke survivors currently exist. This study aimed to assess the effectiveness of self-help relaxation training for anxiety, depression and coping in caregivers of stroke survivors. Additional aims were to explore whether participants followed the proposed structure of the relaxation training and whether their experience replicated effects other populations have reported in the literature in relation to using relaxation training. Method: This mixed methods study adopted a repeated measures within-participant design assessing anxiety, depression and coping at three time points (Pre-1, Pre-2 and Post; N = 18 caregivers of stroke survivors). Post-intervention, semi-structured interview data were also collected and analysed using deductive thematic analysis. Results: Quantitative outcome measures showed significant improvement post-intervention in anxiety, depression and coping in relation to managing stress. Managing Events/Problem-solving and Managing Perceptions/Meanings coping scores showed no significant change post-intervention. Qualitative data supported the quantitative findings, and suggested that participants generally followed the proposed structure of the relaxation training and reported similar effects as found in the literature. Conclusions: This study supports the use of self-help relaxation training for caregivers of stroke survivors in terms of relieving anxiety and depression. Follow-up research is required to assess whether the effects are maintained and to determine whether there are factors which could influence the likelihood of change.
Supervisor: Thompson, Hannah ; Simonds, Laura Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Psych.) Qualification Level: Doctoral