Normalization Strategies of Children With Asthma

Department of Applied Health Sciences, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.
Qualitative Health Research (Impact Factor: 2.19). 12/2008; 19(1):94-104. DOI: 10.1177/1049732308327348
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Despite understanding the physiologic effects of childhood asthma, less is known about how children perceive living with asthma. We undertook semistructured, in-depth interviews with 11 boys and 11 girls (all aged 11) drawn from a larger ongoing asthma study of Manitoba children born in 1995. All had asthma, as diagnosed by a pediatric allergist. We sought to further understand how children perceive asthma. Children spoke of feeling different and commonly used words such as "pain" and "hurt." We have categorized children's strategies to normalize their lives as (a) minimizing the health impact, (b) stressing normality, (c) emphasizing abilities, (d) making adaptations in daily living, and, (e) managing symptoms with medications. These findings suggest that aspects of other researchers' work regarding normalization efforts of children with various chronic diseases also apply in a chronic condition that is less obvious.

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