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Psychosocial burden among caregivers of children with autism spectrum disorder in Najaf province.

Caregivers of children with ASD reported more negative impact and poor psychological wellbeing. They appear to be at great risk for depression, stress, anxiety and distress; and many caregivers have managed to overcome the constant challenge by using their patience and take the consequences to adapt well in the face of adversity. The researcher highlights the family role to find themselves dealing with additional challenges to cope and accept modification, and minimizing the impact of ASD on caregivers by helping them to adjust their expectation to their children. A descriptive cross-sectional study was to determine the burden of ASD on the caregivers and to identify the level of psychosocial burden in dealing with the impact of raising a child with ASD. A non-probability purposive sample of (152) children with ASD and (152) caregivers at AL-Najaf province. The results of the study revealed that caregivers of children with ASD experienced moderate level of psychosocial burden; there were significant differences between the level of psychosocial burden among caregivers and childhood autism rating scale, whereas there is a significant difference between psychosocial burden and some of socio-demographic characteristics of Child's caregivers (gender and monthly income and GHQ). The current study recommends providing family support for families with autistic children, especially a psychological one, and educational about clinical behaviors of ASD for early detection and Family to Family Education Programs to the existing services in community mental health programs.

Author(s): Arfat H Al-Dujaili, Dhafer AJ Al-Mossawy