Relationship Between Waiting Time, Anxiety and Sleep Disturbances Among Saudi Parents of Children Admitted to Pediatric Intensive Care Unit

Eman Dawood, Rufa Mitsu, Hind AlGhadeer, Meaad Alanizi, Reem Alshehri, Shahad Almutairi


Parents of children admitted to PICU experience extreme level of anxiety. It is an extremely difficult process for parents to make a transition from parents of well-child to parents of acutely ill child. Aim: To identify the relationship between waiting time, anxiety and sleep disturbances among saudi parents of children admitted to pediatric intensive care unit. Methods: A cross sectional descriptive correlational study design was employed to conduct this study on a convienience sample of 115 adult parents of children admitted to the PICU. Participants were asked to complete three questionnaire survey including participant’s demographic background, Spielberger State-Trait Anxiety Inventory, and a parental sleep disturbance questionnaire. An explanation about the purpose and the nature of the study was offered for each individual potential participant. Subjects were assured about the confidentiality of the collected data and that it will be only used by the researcher for the purpose of the current study. Data were analyzed using SPSS version 22. Results: More than half of the participants (62.6%) scored 12 and above reflecting considerable levels of anxiety. A very significant precentage (92.7%) of the parents reported sleep problems. Three quarters of the participants (73.2%) mentioned that sleep problems affected them negatively. There was a highly statistically significant difference between groups with different educational background in relation to anxiety, as well Unemployed participants experienced significantly higher anxiety. Conclusion: The findings of this exploratory study indicate considerable levels of anxiety and changes in sleep pattern of parents of children admitted to paediatric intensive care unit. During this period, identifying the parental needs and the causes of anxiety might contribute to parents' mental health.

Keywords: PICU, Parental Anxiety, waiting time, sleep disturbances

DOI: 10.7176/JHMN/71-11

Publication date: February 29th 2020

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