Category: ADHD - Child

Symposium

Improvement in Parent Stress Through a School-Based Intervention for Middle School Students With ADHD

Friday, November 17
10:15 AM - 11:45 AM
Location: Indigo Ballroom E, Level 2, Indigo Level

Keywords: ADHD - Child / Adolescent | Parenting
Presentation Type: Symposium

Parents of children with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) experience greater stress than parents of typically-developing children; and this stress is linked specifically to their children’s behavioral and academic difficulties (Theule et al., 2013). Middle school is associated with increased academic demands and poor performance by teens with ADHD. Little is known about the relationship between academic functioning and parent stress within an adolescent population. This is important because parent stress is related to worse health (Rozanski et al., 1999) and negative parenting practices (Anjum & Malik, 2010). The literature on children indicates that improvements in child functioning through treatment are associated with reductions in parent stress (Heath et al., 2015); however, it is not clear how improved child functioning and how knowing the child is receiving services may each individually contribute to reductions in parent stress. We examined the individual and combined contributions of parents knowing their child is in treatment and parents seeing improvements in academic functioning on parent stress. Data came from a study of a two intervention conditions and a control condition evaluating school based-treatments with 326 middle school student with ADHD (Evans et al., 2016). Using linear regression analyses, we found that parent-rated organization skills as well as change in the students’ GPA were significantly associated with parent stress at the end of the study. An interaction term representing whether the child was in treatment and change in GPA over time was also significantly associated with parent stress. In fact, GPA change was related to parent stress for those receiving treatment but not for those not receiving services. One explanation for this interaction is that parents may believe that treatment resulted in changes to characteristics of the child that may sustain and therefor reduced their stress. However, stress was not reduced by improvements for students not receiving treatment because the change may have been perceived as unreliable. The presentation will include results related to other domains of academic functioning in relation to parent stress.

Kari Benson

Ohio University

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