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Keywords:

  • caregiver;
  • dementia;
  • personality;
  • burden;
  • depression;
  • distress

Abstract

Objective

We hypothesize that the personality influences the caregiver's depression, burden and distress related to BPSD.

Subjects and methods

Participants were 105 consecutive patients with dementia and their family caregivers, living at home, attending a Dementia Clinic. A cross-sectional design was used with an applied a structured interview at home. Comprehensive assessments included: personality (NEO-FFI), burden (ZBI), depression (CES-D) and distress related to BPSD (NPI-distress). Statistical Path analysis was used to study the hypothetical causal and mediating effects between independent and criterion variables.

Results

Neuroticism increased, whereas extraversion decreased, both caregiver's depression and burden. Agreeableness was also found to decrease the burden. The personality characteristics only indirectly influenced the caregiver's distress related to BPSD.

Conclusion

These results reinforce the importance of including personality as an individual resource of the caregiver in the conceptual models and research on caregiving. Assessment of caregiver's personality characteristics should be taken into account for the planning of intervention programs. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.