Everyday life for children with a parent who has cancer : A systematic literature review

University essay from Högskolan i Jönköping/HLK, CHILD

Abstract: Cancer is one of the most common long-term conditions for adults between 25 and 64 years, an age where it is probable to live with children under 18 years at home. This systematic literature review aims to de-scribe children’s everyday life, when one parent has cancer, and the interventions these children need. Previous studies have already agreed on the importance of this field, although there is still limited research. Eleven articles have been extracted from four different databases, following inclusion criteria and a quality assessment procedure, designed by the author. A qualitative content analysis has been developed through categorisation of relevant findings. Results describe, on one hand, children’s everyday life when a parent has cancer, and on the other hand interventions to cover the new needs those children might experience. Children’s mental health can undergo negative emotions and behaviour modification, also a higher ten-dency of children’s social isolation, as well as financial issues that modify children’s everyday life leisure activities, and variations in family functioning with family distress. Interventions to support children’s new needs must focus on psychological, peer, financial and family supports. Coping skills and a fluent communication within the family functioning are indispensable to promote a positive children’s everyday life when a parent has cancer. Limited information about financial and school interventions need to be remedied in future researches.

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