Grief is a normal reaction after a bereavement. Grief after the loss of a child is considered to be more intense and long-lasting than after other types of loss. Parents who have lost a child have more anxiety and depression than other parents, and they have an increased risk of developing complicated grief reactions. It is very common for bereaved people to have sleep problems and research shows that these are associated with complicated grief reactions.
One aim of the project is to investigate grief one to five years after the loss of a child to cancer, and also which aspects in healthcare and within the family affect grief and psychological ill-health in bereaved parents. A second aim is to evaluate the effects of a cognitive behavioural therapy treatment for insomnia conducted via the internet.
About the study
Parents who have lost a child to cancer. The study has two parts: an epidemiological questionnaire survey and an internet-based treatment for sleep disorders. The questionnaire consists of questions concerning the family during the child's illness, the time after the loss, and the parent’s current psychological health, with a focus on grief. Parents with sleep problems are offered the possibility to participate in a randomised controlled trial where one group participates in an internet-based cognitive behavioural therapy treatment for sleep disorders, with therapist support, and a control group receives a brochure with information and advice on sleep and sleep problems.
The aim of the project is to increase knowledge about grief, the factors that affect parents’ grief, and what can be done to reduce the psychological suffering of parents who have lost a child to cancer.
The sleep intervention is believed to reduce sleeping difficulties and improve the health of parents who have lost a child to cancer.
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