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Title: When control exacerbates distress : a qualitative study exploring the experiences of Hong Kong chinese parents in caring for a child with asthma
Authors: Chong, YY 
Leung, D 
Mak, YW
Issue Date: 2018
Source: International journal of environmental research and public health, 2018, v. 15, no. 7, 1372
Abstract: Background: Many parents have difficulty managing childhood asthma. In Hong Kong (HK), while medication is the primary form of treatment, traditional Chinese medicine is another favored option. In addition, HK follows a dual-track healthcare system, which may pose unique experiences for Chinese parents in managing childhood asthma. This qualitative descriptive study aimed to explore the experiences of HK Chinese parents in caring for their children with asthma.
Methods: Fourteen HK Chinese mothers of children (aged 3–10) suffering from asthma were purposively sampled to participate in individual, semi-structured interviews. A realist approach following conventional content analysis was used to interpret the interviews.
Results: The mothers expressed feelings of uncertainty, fear of asthma crises, and searched for ways to cope. As long as their child’s asthma symptoms recurred, the mothers’ distress continued. Their distress was sometimes exacerbated by self-doubt and worries over whether they would receive adequate support from their family and healthcare professionals.
Conclusions: Helping parents to understand their limits may help them be more open to varied aspects of their caregiving experiences, and thus to cope better. Psychological interventions together with traditional educational training may help to alleviate the psychological difficulties of parents.
Keywords: Asthma
Psychological adjustment
Psychological distress
Qualitative research
Publisher: Molecular Diversity Preservation International (MDPI)
Journal: International journal of environmental research and public health 
ISSN: 1661-7827
EISSN: 1660-4601
DOI: 10.3390/ijerph15071372
Rights: © 2018 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (
The following publication: Chong, Y. Y., Leung, D., & Mak, Y. W. (2018). When Control Exacerbates Distress: A Qualitative Study Exploring the Experiences of Hong Kong Chinese Parents in Caring for a Child with Asthma, Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(7), 1372 is available at
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