It is well documented that caregiving is associated with detrimental health outcomes. Depression and chronic stress are the two most common negative psychological effects reported by caregivers. Caring for, or living with, a relative with dementia can be a heavy burden on the health of the caregiver and family members involved. Unfortunately, problem-solving and adaptive-survival-coping strategies are five times less common in caregivers of individuals with dementia compared to caregivers of non-demented individuals. In fact, caring for a patient with dementia is more challenging than caring for a patient with physical disabilities.
The depression rate of caregivers of demented older relatives is 30%. Life satisfaction is less and there is an overall decrease of well-being in caregivers compared to non-caregivers. Although most of the literature focuses on the negative associations with caregiving, there are positive aspects. Eighty-seven percent of caregivers reported good quality of relations, however, caregivers tend to over-report good relations with their relatives due to social pressures.