Adjustment to Chronic Illness

Authored by: Michael A. Hoyt , Annette L. Stanton

Handbook of Health Psychology

Print publication date:  December  2011
Online publication date:  April  2012

Print ISBN: 9780805864618
eBook ISBN: 9780203804100
Adobe ISBN: 9781136638299


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Most adults are affected by chronic illness, whether directly or through the experience of a loved one. Chronic, noncommunicable diseases account for 70% of all deaths in the United States (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2009) and for 60% of mortality worldwide (Daar et al., 2007). Moreover, prolonged illnesses can disrupt the lives of individuals and those around them in profound ways. Over the past few decades, health psychologists and others have devoted intense empirical and clinical attention to identifying psychosocial and biobehavioral contributors to and consequences of chronic disease, as well as approaches to help individuals and families reduce physical and psychological morbidity. This chapter provides a synthesis of current knowledge regarding psychological adjustment to chronic health conditions.

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