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Quality of life among Iranian refugees resettled in Sweden
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Clinical Sciences.
2003 (English)In: Journal of Immigrant Health, ISSN 1096-4045, E-ISSN 1573-3629, Vol. 6, no 2, 71-81 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The relationships between quality of life, psychopathological manifestations and coping relatedvariables (coping resources, social support, sense of coherence) were examined among individualswho have perceived several severe traumata. One hundred Iranian refugees resettledin Sweden have been investigated by theSymptomChecklist (SCL-90-R), the Beck DepressionInventory (BDI), the Coping Resources Inventory (CRI), and the Interview Schedule for SocialInteraction (ISSI), the Sense of Coherence Scale (SOC), and the WHOQoL-100 questionnairein a cross-sectional study. Individuals, traumatized by combat experiences as a soldierduring the war, with low BDI scores showed on average the significantly highest overall qualityof life, the best physical health, the highest scores according to the sense of coherence mostpronounced for “Meaningfulness,” and the best availability of social integration comparedto participants who did not had these experiences in combats and those with the experiencebut scored high in the BDI. Quality of life, coping resources, and social support werefound closely related to psychopathological manifestations. Motivational orientations (highlydeveloped Meaningfulness—SOC) and various coping competencies probably enable sometraumatized individuals to resist against several traumata and to live in a good quality of lifewithout psychopathological disturbances.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer, 2003. Vol. 6, no 2, 71-81 p.
Keyword [en]
quality of life, coping resources, social support, refugee
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-2631DOI: 10.1023/B:JOIH.0000019167.04252.58OAI: diva2:140851
Available from: 2003-11-05 Created: 2003-11-05 Last updated: 2012-05-22Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Trauma and resiliency: a study of refugees from Iran resettled in Sweden
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Trauma and resiliency: a study of refugees from Iran resettled in Sweden
2003 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Several single factors have been identified as related to coping with trauma and as protective factors. Several studies emphasize the importance of personality, core beliefs, coping strategies and social support. However little attention has been paid to resiliency. The aim of the study was to identify some determinants of an individual’s resiliency after experienced traumatic life events, and to address the issue of its relationship to personality characteristics, psychopathology, coping resources and strategies, social support, sense of coherence and quality of life.

In the present study, a convenience sample of 100 Iranian refugees, 66 males and 34 females in the age range of 18-65 were investigated. All the subjects have experienced one or several traumatic life events as soldiers, political prisoners or have been victims of torture or have escaped from the country in a stressful way. At the time of the present investigation the mean time living in Sweden was for male subject’s 12.8 years and for female 11.8.

Nine instruments were administered during individual sessions, Temperament, Character Inventory (TCI), The EMBU (Swedish acronym for own memories concerning upbringing), The Symptom Checklist-90-Revised (SCL-90 – R), Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), Interview Schedule of Social Interaction (ISSI), Coping Resources Inventory (CRI), The Dysfunctional Attitude Scale (DAS), WHOQoL Group, 1995 (WHOQoL-100), The Sense of Coherence Scale (SoC).

Several significant associations were found between personality temperament and character, parental rearing and psychopathology. When experiences of parental rearing were investigated in relation to psychopathology, male subjects scored high on parental rejection and were also more depressed compared to females. Although the individuals in the sample suffered from depression or anxiety, there were individuals that had adapted them-self well with the new life in Sweden and its demands. Nineteen percent of subjects who had low harm avoidance and high self directedness received more social support, had better coping strategies, higher sense of coherence and finally a better quality of life.

This dissertation underscores the importance of multiple indicators when trying to understand resiliency. Personality traits, parental rearing, coping resources, social support and sense of coherence were the strongest predictors for resiliency. Having a systemic perspective helps to explain why some individuals are healthy and resilient despite traumatic life events, escaping from home country, applying for asylum, establishing a new home, learning new languages, to study and stablish and develop new bonds.

73 p.
Umeå University medical dissertations, ISSN 0346-6612 ; 858
Psychiatry, Psykiatri
National Category
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-139 (URN)91-7305-531-X (ISBN)
Public defence
2003-11-21, Umeå, 09:00 (English)
Available from: 2003-11-05 Created: 2003-11-05 Last updated: 2010-09-21Bibliographically approved

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