"Learning to live with what you can't rise above": control beliefs, symptom control, and adjustment to tinnitus.

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Sirois, F.M. ; Davis, C.G. ; Morgan, M.S. (2006)
  • Publisher: American Psychological Association

The relations between 3 types of perceived control, symptom severity, and 2 adaptational outcomes, depressive symptoms and psychological well-being, were examined in a sample of 319 people with tinnitus. Consistent with previous studies of control and adjustment to chronic health conditions, general health and symptom control were associated with better psychological adjustment, and retrospective control was associated with worse psychological adjustment. Only symptom control emerged as a significant moderator in the symptom severity-adjustment relationship, such that stronger beliefs in one's ability to control symptoms were most strongly associated with better adjustment among those with more severe tinnitus symptoms. These findings were consistent with coping perspectives and cognitive adaptation theory and suggest that symptom-related perceptions of control may be an effective coping resource to nurture in chronic health contexts with severe symptoms.
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