The psychological effects of caring for a family member with dementia
Evidence and practice    

The psychological effects of caring for a family member with dementia

Bernie Reid Lecturer, School of Nursing, Ulster University, Coleraine, Northern Ireland
Lauryn O’Brien Nursing student, Ulster University, Coleraine, Northern Ireland

Why you should read this article:
  • To understand the role of caregivers in supporting people living with dementia

  • To familiarise yourself with the psychological aspect of caring for someone with dementia

  • To learn about the interventions that can improve the psychological well-being of caregivers

Informal caregivers have a vital role in supporting and caring for family members with dementia. Caregiving is complex and may lead to psychological, physical, social and financial stress for caregivers. This article reports the findings of an integrative review that explored the literature on the psychological effect of caring for a family member with dementia at home. The article discusses four themes that were identified in the literature: ‘the world shrinks’; ‘surrender to the unknown’; ‘robbed of the future’; and ‘torn between relief and guilt’. These themes provide insight into the holistic experience of caring for a family member with dementia, revealing the positive and negative psychological effects of the role.

Nursing Older People. doi: 10.7748/nop.2021.e1295

Peer review

This article has been subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated software

Correspondence

bb.reid@ulster.ac.uk

Conflict of interest

None declared

Reid B, O’Brien L (2021) The psychological effects of caring for a family member with dementia. Nursing Older People. doi: 10.7748/nop.2021.e1295

Published online: 11 August 2021

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