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Medical Conditions on Adolescents

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Submitted By kellyshaw93
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Chronic illness has a large effect on everyone, no matter what the age. In adolescents, they are still dependent on their parents as their caregivers, and are old enough to understand and make decisions for themselves. Chronic illness has been defined as “an illness that is prolonged in duration, does not often resolve spontaneously, and is rarely cured completely.” (Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing). Adolescence is “a period of rapid physical, psychological, emotional and social development during which young people develop a sense of an independent identity, focus on peer acceptance, and plan for the future and then develop romantic and intimate relationships.” (Erickson 1963, Suris et al 2004 Christie & Viner 2005). Young people with chronic illness have the same developmental issues as those who are perfectly healthy. Hundreds of studies have been undertaken in regards to how chronic illness impact the lives of adolescents and the people around them. One example is the Methodological quality was assessed using criteria described by Cesario et al (Journal of Obstetrics, Gynaecology& Neonatal Nursing 31 2002 31) and the conclusion was that 20 studies identified involving young people with wide variety of chronic illnesses. Seven common themes were found between identified studies; developing and maintaining friendships, importance of family, attitude to treatment, experiences of school, being normal/getting on with life, relationship with healthcare professionals, and the future. The most chronic condition in adolescents is Asthma. Followed by sensory disorders and Nerve System disorders. Other examples are Diabetes, Lupus, Spina Bifida and Anorexia Nervosa.

Adolescents often report a sense of alienation and differentiation from peers and leads to frustration with the requirements of managing their condition. Young people with...

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