The current qualitative study was designed to evaluate the coping strategies of people living with a chronic progressive neurological illness and their carers. The neurological illnesses were Huntington’s disease, motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease. Participants included 15 people who showed high levels of adjustment and 15 who showed low levels of adjustment. Participants were selected from an earlier study, to ensure that they satisfied the inclusion criteria for the current study. Interviews were completed to determine the strategies used to cope with the demands of the illness. Participants who demonstrated good adjustment were more likely to draw on social support to provide them with the resources to deal with the illness. In contrast, those who evidenced poor adjustment were more likely to draw on external supports to complete tasks for them. The implications of these findings for people with chronic neurological illnesses and their families are discussed.
Field of Research
170106 Health, Clinical and Counselling Psychology