THE RELATIONSHIPS AMONG COPING STRATEGIES, GRIEF SEVERITY, AND BLOOD PRESSURE IN WIDOWS AND WIDOWERS
AuthorMARTINEZ, ALAINA NICOLE
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractBereaved individuals’ grief severity and physiological outcomes can greatly affect overall functioning and health. The coping strategies individuals employ during bereavement have been shown to significantly affect widows’ and widowers’ adjustment. Coping strategies can be understood in three categories: Trauma Focus (TF), Forward Focus (FF), and Flexibility; which encompasses oscillations between TF and FF. The aim of the study was to explore the effects of these coping strategies on grief severity and resting blood pressure in widows and widowers. It was predicted that individuals who demonstrated higher Flexibility and higher FF would have lower grief severity. Also, individuals who demonstrated higher Flexibility and higher FF would have lower blood pressure relative to those who score lower in Flexibility and higher in reported TF. Two to three resting blood pressure measurements were taken on the same day. Cross sectional regression analyses were performed. Results indicate a negative relationship between coping Flexibility and grief severity in support of the first hypothesis. However, the results do not indicate a significant relationship between coping strategies and blood pressure, disconfirming the second hypothesis. Further investigation would be of interest to guide bereaved individuals’ coping strategies to potentially decrease grief severity.
Degree ProgramHonors College