A randomised controlled trial of a social support intervention

Martin, Paul R., Reece, John, Lauder, Sue and McClelland, Andrew 2011, A randomised controlled trial of a social support intervention, Applied psychology : health and well-being, vol. 3, no. 1, pp. 44-65, doi: 10.1111/j.1758-0854.2010.01044.x.

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Title A randomised controlled trial of a social support intervention
Author(s) Martin, Paul R.
Reece, John
Lauder, Sue
McClelland, Andrew
Journal name Applied psychology : health and well-being
Volume number 3
Issue number 1
Start page 44
End page 65
Total pages 22
Publisher Wiley - Blackwell Publishing
Place of publication Oxford, England
Publication date 2011-03
ISSN 1758-0846
Keyword(s) anxiety
social skills
social support
Summary Background: Much evidence has accumulated over the last three decades that low social support is related to both mental and physical health. Despite this large and convincing literature, reviewers have noted that there exists remarkably little evidence that social support can be increased by an appropriate intervention. This study reports on the development and evaluation of a new intervention for social support which takes account of the stress-buffering and direct effect models.

Method: Eighty-one individuals scoring low on social support were randomly allocated to the intervention or a waiting-list control condition. Treatment consisted of 10 weekly sessions administered in a group format, and 49 participants (nine males) completed assessments at the beginning and end of a 10-week period, and at 10-week follow-up (intervention condition only).

Results: The intervention proved to be successful at increasing functional support but not structural support. The intervention was also successful in increasing the social skill of self-disclosure, and decreasing depression. Gains made between pre- and post-treatment were maintained at 10-week follow-up.

Conclusions: Based on published analyses of the effects of social support on health, the results imply that the intervention would be useful for stress-buffering purposes, but not for the general health-promoting effects that are associated with good social integration.
Language eng
DOI 10.1111/j.1758-0854.2010.01044.x
Field of Research 179999 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective 970117 Expanding Knowledge in Psychology and Cognitive Sciences
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2011, The Authors, Applied Psychology : Health and Well-Being, The International Association of Applied Psychology
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30047280

Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Health
School of Psychology
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