Perceptions of caregiver distress, health behaviors, and provider health-promoting communication and their relationship to stress management in MS caregivers

Lauren Penwell-Waines, Marie Christine Rutter Goodworth, Rhonda S. Casillas, Rebecca Rahn, Lara Stepleman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations


This study applied the Stress/Health Model to examine a novel approach for promoting stress management among 67 caregivers of persons with multiple sclerosis, who often face unique caregiving challenges. Hierarchical regressions indicated that caregiver distress (i.e., emotional burden) and engagement in other health-promoting activities (i.e., controlling alcohol use) were the best predictors of caregiver stress management. Communication with the MS care recipient’s health provider about caregiver engagement in health-promoting activities was associated with caregiver stress management, but not significantly more so than explained by the other factors (i.e., caregiver distress and engagement in health-promoting behaviors). A more controlled study would be indicated to further explain how to encourage, within the medical setting, caregiver engagement in self-care activities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)478-484
Number of pages7
JournalHealth Communication
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2 2016


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Communication

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