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Relationships between adverse childhood experiences and adult mental well-being: results from an English national household survey
Professor Karen Hughes, Helen Lowey, Dr Zara Quigg, Professor Mark Bellis
BMC Public Health 16:222, 2016.
Abstract: Background: Individuals’ childhood experiences can strongly influence their future health and well-being. Adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) such as abuse and dysfunctional home environments show strong cumulative relationships with physical and mental illness yet less is known about their effects on mental well-being in the general population. Methods: A nationally representative household survey of English adults (n = 3,885) measuring current mental well-being (Short Edinburgh-Warwick Mental Well-being Scale SWEMWBS) and life satisfaction and retrospective exposure to nine ACEs. Results: Almost half of participants (46.4 %) had suffered at least one ACE and 8.3 % had suffered four or more. Adjusted odds ratios (AORs) for low life satisfaction and low mental well-being increased with the number of ACEs. AORs for low ratings of all individual SWEMWBS components also increased with ACE count, particularly never or rarely feeling close to others. Of individual ACEs, growing up in a household affected by mental illness and suffering sexual abuse had the most relationships with markers of mental well-being. Conclusions: Childhood adversity has a strong cumulative relationship with adult mental well-being. Comprehensive mental health strategies should incorporate interventions to prevent ACEs and moderate their impacts from the very earliest stages of life.
Simon Russell, Professor Karen Hughes, Professor Mark Bellis
BMJ Open, 2016.
Abstract: Objectives: To examine the relative contribution of childhood experience, measured by childhood violence and childhood happiness, and adult well-being on adult eating preferences and behaviours, independent of proximal factors such as current deprivation. Design: A cross-sectional, stratified, randomised sample survey using retrospective measures of childhood violence and happiness and self-reported measures of current well-being. Setting: The North West Region of England between September 2012 and March 2013. Participants: Individuals aged 18–95-year-olds from randomly selected households ( participation was successful for 90% of eligible households and 78% of the total visited addresses; n=11 243). Outcomes: Dichotomised measures for preference of healthy foods or ‘feel good’ foods and low or high daily fruit and vegetable consumption. Results: After correcting for demographics, combined categories for childhood experience and dichotomised measures of adult well-being were found to be significantly related to adult food preferences and eating behaviours. Participants with unhappy and violent childhoods compared to those with happy and non-violent childhoods had adjusted ORs (95% CI, significance) of 2.67 (2.15 to 3.06, p<0.001) of having low daily fruit and vegetable intake (two or less portions) and 1.53 (1.29 to 1.81, p<0.001) of choosing ‘feel good’ foods over foods which were good for their long term health. Conclusions: Daily intake of fruit and vegetables, linked to non-communicable diseases, and preference for ‘feel good’ foods, linked to obesity, are affected by childhood experience and adult well-being independent of demographic factors. Preventative interventions which support parent–child relationships and improve childhood experience are likely to reduce the development of poor dietary and other health-risk behaviours.
A scoping review to understand the effectiveness of linking schemes from healthcare providers to community resources to improve the health and well-being of people with long-term conditions
Rahena Mossabir, Rebecca Morris, Anne Kennedy, Dr Christian Blickem, Anne Rogers
Health & Social Care in the Community Volume 23, Issue 5, pages 467–484, September, 2015.
Abstract: The prevalence of people living with long-term conditions is increasing, accompanied by an increased expectation that patients will become more involved in self-management. Long-term conditions are associated with increased social isolation and poor physical and mental health. But there remains a gap in health provision between providing medical treatment and effectively addressing psychosocial well-being. One potential way of addressing this gap is by utilising social interventions which link patients from health services to community-based sources of support. However, the mechanisms involved in the delivery of interventions providing that link and their effectiveness remain unclear. This review adopted the methodological framework for conducting scoping studies, searching for both academic and grey literature on social interventions which link people from healthcare settings to a range of community and voluntary sector organisations. A literature search between May and June 2013, involving five electronic databases, hand searching of two journals and the use of Google search engine, identified seven studies relevant to the review question. In terms of key characteristics and mechanisms of the interventions, mental health conditions and social isolation were the most common reasons for referral to the interventions, and referrals were usually made through general practices. Almost all the interventions were facilitator-led, whereby the facilitator worked to identify and link participants to appropriate community-based resources. In regard to health and social outcomes and their cost-effectiveness, studies reported improvement to participants' psychological and social well-being as well as their decreased use of health services, although there were limited measures of participants' physical health outcomes. Interventions for linking patients from healthcare setting to community-based resources target and address psychosocial needs of participants. The review identified involvement of health professionals in aiding the referral of patients to the intervention and the role of the intervention facilitators as key components of the interventions.
A systematic review and metaethnography to identify how effective, cost-effective, accessible and acceptable self-management support interventions are for men with long-term conditions (SELF-MAN)
Paul Galdas, Zoe Darwin, Jennifer Fell, Lisa Kidd, Peter Bower, Dr Christian Blickem, Kerri McPherson, Kate Hunt, Simon Gilbody, Gerry Richardson
Health Services and Delivery Research Volume: 3 Issue: 34, 2015.
Abstract: Background: Self-management support interventions can improve health outcomes, but their impact is limited by the numbers of patients able or willing to access them. Men’s attendance at, and engagement with, self-management support appears suboptimal despite their increased risk of developing serious and disabling long-term conditions (LTCs). Objectives: To assess the effectiveness, cost-effectiveness, accessibility and acceptability of self-management support interventions in men with LTCs. Methods: A quantitative systematic review with meta-analysis and a qualitative review using a metaethnography approach. The findings of the two reviews were integrated in parallel synthesis. Data sources: In the quantitative review, the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews was searched to identify published reviews of self-management support interventions. Relevant reviews were screened to identify randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of self-management support interventions conducted in men alone, or which analysed the effects of interventions by gender. In the qualitative review, the databases Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature, EMBASE, Medical Literature Analysis and Retrieval System Online, PsycINFO and Social Science Citation Index (July 2013) were searched from inception to July 2013. Review methods: In the quantitative review, data on relevant outcomes, patient populations, intervention type and study quality were extracted. Quality appraisal was conducted independently by two reviewers using the Cochrane risk of bias tool. Meta-analysis was conducted to compare the effects of interventions in male, female and mixed-sex groups. In the metaethnography, study details, participant quotes (first-order constructs) and study authors’ themes/concepts (second-order constructs) were extracted. Quality appraisal was conducted independently by two reviewers using the Critical Appraisal Skills Programme tool. Data were synthesised according to a metaethnography approach. Third-order interpretations/constructs were derived from the extracted data and integrated to generate a ‘line-of-argument’ synthesis. Results: Forty RCTs of self-management support interventions in male-only samples, and 20 RCTs where an analysis by gender was reported, were included in the quantitative review. Meta-analysis suggested that interventions including physical activity, education and peer support have a positive impact on quality of life in men, and that men may derive more benefit than women from them, but there is currently insufficient evidence to draw definitive conclusions. Thirty-eight qualitative studies relevant to men’s experiences of, and perceptions of, self-management support were included in the qualitative review. The metaethnography identified four concepts: (1) need for purpose; (2) trusted environments; (3) value of peers; and (4) becoming an expert. Findings indicated that men may feel less comfortable engaging in support if it is perceived to be incongruous with valued aspects of masculine identities. Men may find support interventions more attractive when they have a clear purpose, are action-oriented and offer practical strategies that can be integrated into daily life. Support delivered in an environment that offers a sense of shared understanding can be particularly appealing to some men. Conclusions: Health professionals and those involved in designing interventions may wish to consider whether or not certain components (e.g. physical activity, education, peer support) are particularly effective in men, although more research is needed to fully determine and explore this. Interventions are most likely to be accessible and acceptable to men when working with, not against, valued aspects of masculine identities.
Connecting local support: A qualitative study exploring the role of voluntary organisations in long-term condition management
Rebecca Morris, Sue Kirk, Anne Kennedy, Ivaylo Vassilev, Amy Mathieson, Mark Jeffries, Dr Christian Blickem, Helen Brooks, Caroline Sanders, Anne Rogers
Chronic Illness, 11(2), 140-155, 2015.
Abstract: Objectives: To examine the role of community groups to support people living with long-term conditions and the organisational factors that influence this role. Methods: Thirty-three semi-structured interviews were conducted with voluntary group organisers purposefully sampled in Greater Manchester from a local database of community groups. Interviews explored the organisations role in supporting people living with a long-term condition, their social networks and the origins of the groups. Results: Respondents’ construed their role in supporting individual capacity for management either explicitly (e.g. providing exercise) or implicitly (e.g. emotional support). This role was influenced by a combination of group ideology, funding and social networks. Analysis highlights the role of the non-clinical setting, the social support provided within the group, as well as organisational processes that influenced their capacity to support people living with long-term conditions. Conclusion: By examining the organisation of voluntary groups, this study highlights the way in which they may support or constrain access to an extended range of support for people with long-term conditions. This paper has implications for commissioning of services by the health service from the third sector because of the differing ideological perspectives and limited operational capacity.
‘I’m managing my diabetes between two worlds’: Beliefs and experiences of diabetes management in British South Asians on holiday in the East: a qualitative study
Neesha Patel, Anne Kennedy, Dr Christian Blickem, David Reeves, Carolyn Chew-Graham
Journal of Diabetes Research, 2015.
Abstract: Background. Diabetes is disproportionately high among British South Asians compared to the general UK population. Whilst the migrant British South Asians group has received most attention on research related to diabetes management, little consideration has been given to impact of travel back to the East. This study aimed to explore the role of social networks and beliefs about diabetes in British South Asians, to better understand their management behaviours whilst holidaying in the East. Methods. Semistructured interviews were conducted in Greater Manchester. Forty-four participants were recruited using random and purposive sampling techniques. Interviews were analysed thematically using a constant comparison approach. Results. Migrant British South Asians expressed a strong preference to be in a hot climate; they felt they had a healthier lifestyle in the East and often altered or abandoned their diabetes medication. Information acquisition on diabetes and availability of social networks in the East was valued. Conclusion. Social networks in the East are a valued source of information and support for diabetes. The lack of adherence to medication whilst abroad suggests that some migrant British South Asians have a poor understanding of diabetes. Future research needs to explore whether patients are seeking professional advice on diabetes management prior to their extended holiday.
Illness beliefs and the sociocultural context of diabetes self-management in British South Asians: A mixed methods study
Neesha Patel, Carolyn Chew-Graham, Christine Bundy, Anne Kennedy, Dr Christian Blickem, David Reeves
BMC Family Practice 2015, 16:58, 2015.
Abstract: Background: British South Asians have a higher incidence of diabetes and poorer health outcomes compared to the general UK population. Beliefs about diabetes are known to play an important role in self-management, yet little is known about the sociocultural context in shaping beliefs. This study aimed to explore the influence of sociocultural context on illness beliefs and diabetes self-management in British South Asians. Methods: A mixed methods approach was used. 67 participants recruited using random and purposive sampling, completed a questionnaire measuring illness beliefs, fatalism, health outcomes and demographics; 37 participants completed a social network survey interview and semi-structured interviews. Results were analysed using SPSS and thematic analysis. Results: Quantitative data found certain social network characteristics (emotional and illness work) were related to perceived concern, emotional distress and health outcomes (p < 0.05). After multivariate analysis, emotional work remained a significant predictor of perceived concern and emotional distress related to diabetes (p < 0.05). Analysis of the qualitative data suggest that fatalistic attitudes and beliefs influences self-management practices and alternative food ‘therapies’ are used which are often recommended by social networks. Conclusions: Diabetes-related illness beliefs and self-management appear to be shaped by the sociocultural context. Better understanding of the contextual determinants of behaviour could facilitate the development of culturally appropriate interventions to modify beliefs and support self-management in this population.
Participation in voluntary and community organisations in the United Kingdom and the influences on the self-management of long-term conditions
Mark Jeffries, Amy Mathieson, Anne Kennedy, Sue Kirk, Rebecca Morris, Dr Christian Blickem, Ivaylo Vassilev, Anne Rogers
Health & Social Care in the Community Volume 23, Issue 3, pages 252–261, May, 2015.
Abstract: Voluntary and community organisations (VCOs) have health benefits for those who attend and are viewed as having the potential to support long-term condition management. However, existing community-level understandings of participation do not explain the involvement with VCOs at an individual level, or the nature of support, which may elicit health benefits. Framing active participation as ‘doing and experiencing’, the aim of this qualitative study was to explore why people with long-term vascular conditions join VCOs, maintain their membership and what prevents participation. Twenty participants, self-diagnosed as having diabetes, chronic heart disease or chronic kidney disease, were purposefully sampled and recruited from a range of VCOs in the North West of England identified from a mapping of local organisations. In semi-structured interviews, we explored the nature of their participation. Analysis was thematic and iterative involving a continual reflection on the data. People gave various reasons for joining groups. These included health and well-being, the need for social contact and pursuing a particular hobby. Barriers to participation included temporal and spatial barriers and those associated with group dynamics. Members maintained their membership on the basis of an identity and sense of belonging to the group, developing close relationships within it and the availability of support and trust. Participants joined community groups often in response to a health-related event. Our findings demonstrate the ways in which the social contact associated with continued participation in VCOs is seen as helping with long-term condition management. Interventions designed at improving chronic illness management might usefully consider the role of VCOs.
Non-disclosure of chronic kidney disease in primary care and the limits of instrumental rationality in chronic illness self-management
Gavin Daker-White, Anne Rogers, Anne Kennedy, Tom Blakeman, Dr Christian Blickem, Carolyn Chew-Graham
Social Science & Medicine Volume 131, Pages 31–39, April, 2015.
Abstract: Early detection of long term conditions is predicated on assumptions that lifestyle changes and medications can be used to reduce or manage the risk of condition progression. However, ambiguity remains about the nature and place of diagnostic disclosure to people in newly recognised or asymptomatic ‘pre’ conditions such as early stage chronic kidney disease (CKD). The disclosure of a diagnosis is relevant to instigating strategies which rely on actively engaging patients as self-managers of their own care. Whilst primary care routinely records a diagnosis of early stage CKD, little is known about how patients learn about the fact that they have CKD or how they respond to this. This study aimed to explore patients' experiences of disclosure of CKD in primary care settings. A nested qualitative study of participants recruited to a trial of an intervention for CKD patients in Greater Manchester, UK was undertaken. A purposive sample of 26 patients, with a mean age of 72 years (range 59–89, median 71), were interviewed during 2012. Interview transcripts were analysed using constant comparative techniques. Narrative accounts reflected limited or partial disclosure of CKD; often cast in vague terms as “nothing to worry about”. How patients described themselves in terms of participation and their tendencies towards ‘active’ or ‘passive’ involvement in consultations emerged as important components of narratives around disclosure. The findings illuminate the ways in which diagnosis is oriented in a context where it is possible to meet the requirements for remuneration under a pay for performance system of primary care, whilst apparently not disclosing a label or a diagnosis to patients. This challenges the presumptions inherent in wider health policy objectives that are increasingly built on the notion of responsible patients and the ethos of the active support of self-management for pre-conditions.
The effectiveness of self-management support interventions for men with long-term conditions: A systematic review and meta-analysis
Paul Galdas, Jennifer Fell, Peter Bower, Lisa Kidd, Dr Christian Blickem, Kerri McPherson, Kate Hunt, Simon Gilbody, Gerry Richardson
BMJ Open, 5(3), 2015.
Abstract: Objectives: To assess the effectiveness of self-management support interventions in men with long-term conditions. Methods: A quantitative systematic review with meta-analysis. Data sources: The Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews was searched to identify published reviews of self-management support interventions. Relevant reviews were screened to identify randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of self-management support interventions conducted in men alone, or which analysed the effects of interventions by sex. Review methods: Data on relevant outcomes, patient populations, intervention type and study quality were extracted. Quality appraisal was conducted using the Cochrane Risk of Bias Tool. Meta-analysis was conducted to compare the effects of interventions in men, women, and mixed-sex sub-groups. Results: 40 RCTs of self-management support interventions in men, and 20 eligible RCTs where an analysis by sex was reported, were included in the review. Meta-analysis suggested that physical activity, education, and peer support-based interventions have a positive impact on quality of life in men. However, there is currently insufficient evidence to make strong statements about whether self-management support interventions show larger, similar or smaller effects in men compared with women and mixed-sex groups. Conclusions: Clinicians may wish to consider whether certain types of self-management support (eg, physical activity, education, peer support) are particularly effective in men, although more research is needed to fully determine and explore this.