All ETDs from UAB

Advisory Committee Chair

Olivio J Clay

Advisory Committee Members

Michael G Crowe

Pamela G Bowen

Document Type

Thesis

Date of Award

2019

Degree Name by School

Master of Arts (MA) College of Arts and Sciences

Abstract

Diabetes is a health problem that affects millions of Americans annually, and Black Americans have a higher prevalence with more complications than White Americans. A disparity exists between Black and White older adults living with diabetes in distress related to symptoms, treatment, and complications associated with the disease. Additionally, there are differences in levels of performing diabetes self-care behaviors between Blacks and Whites. One series of factors that may predict better diabetes self-care and diabetes distress in older adults are self-care efficacy and components of social support. This study used linear regression models to predict racial differences between Blacks and Whites in diabetes self-care behaviors and diabetes distress. This study also examined social support components as potential mediators of disparities between Blacks and Whites in self-care behaviors and distress. In the current sample, Blacks did have more diabetes distress, but there were no racial differences in performing self-care behaviors. Some social support components predicted diabetes distress, particularly negative interaction. Mediation analyses revealed negative interaction as a mediator of the racial difference between Blacks and Whites in diabetes distress. These findings replicate those of other studies that have found racial differences in diabetes distress. This study also found important factors related to diabetes self-care and diabetes distress. However, this study did not replicate findings of studies that have found racial differences in self-care behaviors. This study presents a novel model with negative interaction as a potential explanation for some disparities between Blacks and Whites in diabetes health.

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