Quality of life and proactive coping with stress in a group of middle adulthood women with type 2 diabetes

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Abstract

In middle adulthood the intensity of stress is significantly higher than in the preceding developmental period. This stress is particularly significant in the case of chronically ill women, including those with type 2 diabetes. In this group, the disease-related stress intensifies the difficulties generated by the decrease of age-related organismic resources and in many instances impairs the quality of life. Therefore, an ability to cope with difficult situations is of crucial importance. The aim of the research was to estimate the general level of life-satisfaction, as well as the frequency and effectiveness of proactive coping strategies in a group of middle adulthood women with type 2 diabetes compared to women not suffering from diabetes. The study was conducted with methods which have acknowledged psychometric properties (SWLS, WHOQoL - BREF, PCI) as well as a survey collecting sociodemographic data. Women suffering from type 2 diabetes are less satisfied with their prior and current life, health and the physical dimension of their lives and environment. Only partially do they employ proactive coping strategies different from those used by the women from the healthy group. For life-satisfaction in its various aspects it is particularly important for the diabetic women to more often use the strategy of reflective coping and to less often seek emotional support while using the strategy of preventive coping or avoidance. The proactive strategies directed at anticipated stress are connected with the level of life-satisfaction and considered to be health resources.

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