Lack of Social Support Tied To Parental Depression

Recent research indicates that parents in low-income environment are more prone to depression, especially when there is a lack of social support. Prevalent in rural regions, facilities such as social and health resources are few.

Community groups, churches, school or sports-related activities and other such social support mechanisms act as an impediment to negative thinking, helping parents prone to depression to make better and more positive choices, helping them engage in healthy parental practices.

These research findings support a full-faceted care plan for families in need which combine skill-based interventions along with social recommendations. Measures such as these could help to reduce detrimental effects of economic stress on individual and family functioning.

This study examined the links between family income, social support, parental depression and parenting among 290 predominantly rural families. All these families had children at risk for disruptive or socially withdrawn behaviours. The data was analyzed using structural equation modeling and multiple regression, while results showed that low family income was related to high levels of parental depression. This in turn was associated with disruptive parenting. The research also indicated that social support interceded the adverse relationship between low family income and parental depression. Meanwhile, social support was directly related to positive parenting and indirectly to parent-child relational frustration through parental depression. The indirect relationship between low family income and parenting were moderated by social support. The study also briefly discusses the implications for prevention intervention.

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