Comparison of subjective wellbeing in substance users and the parents or partners of substance users
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This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Comparison of subjective wellbeing in substance users and the parents or partners of substance users. Drug and Alcohol Review. , which has been published in final form at 37 (1): pp. S415-S419, 10.1111/dar.12615. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving at http://olabout.wiley.com/WileyCDA/Section/id-828039.html
Introduction and Aims: There is growing interest in the impact of substance use on both the individual consumer's subjective wellbeing (SWB) and the reduced SWB of those closely connected to him or her. The study aimed to compare SWB among substance users ('consumers') and the parents or partners affected by another's substance use, and to evaluate the effect of counselling on changed SWB to 6 months. Design and Methods: The study used longitudinal data from a not-for-profit treatment service based in Perth, Australia. Subjective wellbeing was assessed with the Personal Wellbeing Index (PWI) at baseline and 6 months. Data were compared to national norms (mean 75.97) with one sample t tests. Change in PWI scores was assessed with generalised linear mixed models, controlling for age, gender, group (consumers versus parents or partners), psychological distress (Kessler-10) and social connectedness (Lubben). Results: Of 220 participants, 136 (62%) were consumers and 84 (38%) were parents or partners. At 6 months 123 (56%) were re-interviewed. At baseline, both consumers (mean 53.7) and parents or partners (mean 66.1) had significantly lower PWI scores than national norms. At 6 months, only the substance users' PWI scores remained significantly lower (mean 67.8). Subjective wellbeing significantly increased with time (ß=5.52; 95% confidence interval 3.15, 7.90), with no significant time by group interaction. Discussion and Conclusions: Both groups showed significant decrements in SWB compared with the general population but with improvements over the study period. However, the lack of a control group prevents definitive assertions on causality for improved SWB.
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