August 10, 2006
Religious Beliefs Can Protect Psychological Well-Being During Stressful Experience
Perceptions of social
support and hope help heart surgery patients recover
According to a recent study, faith-based positive religious resources can protect psychological well-being through enhanced hope and perceived social
These results were presented today at the annual convention of the American Psychological Association (APA).
Although the connection between religiosity and health-related well-being has been studied for years, recent research found that the connection between religion and well-being is more complex than past studies suggested.
Lead author Amy L. Ai, PhD, of the
The researchers found that perceived social
“The contribution of social
Acts of positive religious coping include religious forgiveness, seeking spiritual
Furthermore, having negative religious thoughts and struggles may hinder recovery.
Negative coping styles are associated with the inability of patients to protect their psychological well-being against the distress of depression and anxiety that tend to predict poor postoperative recovery in the literature.
This relationship is related to poor mental health at both preoperative and postoperative times, indicating ongoing faith-based struggles. Negative coping patterns consist of spiritual discontent, thoughts of punishing God, insecurity, demonic thoughts, interpersonal religious discontent, religious doubt, and discontented spiritual relations.
“These pathways appear to be key in understanding how religious coping styles may be helpful or harmful to a person’s ability to handle stressful situations. These findings imply that health and mental health professionals should be more attentive to faith factors as inspirational or motivational springboards in some contexts,” said Dr. Ai.
Source: American Psychological Association