Relationship between chronic anxiety and perceptions of illness behavior in latency-aged children;
A primary mental health coal is helping children to develop self-esteem and the ability to cop with stress and anxiety. A preventive approach could foster an awareness of children at risk for chronic anxiety and in need of assistance, particularly in situations perceived to be unusually stressful. This study was conducted to examine the relationship between the dimensions of manifest anxiety and latency-aged children’s perceptions of their own illness behaviors. On the assumption that the intensity of the anxiety is proportionate to the meaning the individual ascribes to a given situation, it was proposed that subjective perceptions of illness might be more threatening to children who are chronically anxious than to those who are not, and would be less able to cope effectively. Three hypotheses were developed based on a review of the literature. The first stated that the more anxious the children were, the more likely they would be to perceive themselves displaying either very many of very few illness behaviors. The second hypothesis stated that the less anxious latency-aged children were, the more likely they would be to perceive themselves displaying a moderate amount of illness behaviors. The third hypothesis stated that there would be no significant difference between the perceived illness behaviors of healthy children and those of children with a significant history of illness. Fifty-four children age eight to 11 were administered a questionnaire containing a manifest anxiety scale which consisted of physical, worry and fear dimensions, and an illness behavior scale which contained emotionality, acceptance and communication dimensions. Through the use of Pearson Product-Monment Correlation Coefficients (r), the dimensions of each of these scales were correlated to determine whether or not significant relationships existed. There was no significant relationship between the total illness behavior score and the total manifest anxiety score. Therefore, neither the first nor second hypotheses was supported. However, a scattergram was used to illustrate that children with the highest anxiety scores had high illness behavior scores while children with lower manifest anxiety scores had moderately-ranged illness behavior scores. This indicates that children with moderately high anxiety scores were more likely to perceive themselves displaying many illness behaviors, while children who had low anxiety scores were apt to perceive themselves displaying a moderate amount of illness behaviors. A t-test for independent measures demonstrated no significant difference between the responses of healthy children with a recent hasty of illness. Therefore, the third hypothesis was supported. An additional finding of the study was that of all the aspects of illness behavior, emotionality was most related to manifest anxiety and was significantly correlated with physical aspects, worry aspects, and total manifest anxiety score.
University of Utah;
Anxiety; Sick Role; Child;
University of Utah;
Relation-Is Version Of
Digital reproduction of “The relationship between chronic anxiety and perceptions of illness behavior in latency-aged children.” Spencer S. Eccles Health Sciences Library. Print version of “The relationship between chronic anxiety and perceptions of illness behavior in latency-aged children.” available at J. Willard Marriott Library Special Collection. BF 21.5 1984 F47.