[Parental stress in families of children with cerebral palsy: an integrative review]

Cien Saude Colet. 2013 Jun;18(6):1705-15.
[Article in Portuguese]


This article aims to select, evaluate and interpret critically the bibliographic production focused on the stress experienced by parents/caregivers of children with cerebral palsy. An integrative literature review was conducted. Sources for this search were the Virtual Health Library (VHL), the United States National Library of Medicine (PubMed) and manual search of references from the selected studies. It was decided to select studies published between 1998 and 2011. The sample included 13 articles. Parents of children with cerebral palsy have higher stress levels than parents of children without disabilities. Behavioral problems, psychological disorders and emotional needs of children were factors commonly associated with high levels of stress. Satisfaction with social support, satisfaction with the parental role, a good family rapport, an emotional bond between father/mother and child, spousal support and the sense of being an active participation in social life help reduce stress levels. Parents of children with cerebral palsy are likely to have their health affected by higher levels of stress. Thus, health professionals should give them special attention.

Publication types

  • English Abstract
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cerebral Palsy*
  • Child
  • Humans
  • Parents / psychology*
  • Stress, Psychological / etiology*