Family Caregiving in Dementia: Caregivers’ Mental Health and Nature of Caregiving

Family caregivers are the main lifeline of a person with dementia. In India, research on caregivers’ health is rarely attempted. Present study aims to examine the relationship between selected mental health traits of family caregivers and the duration and level of caregiving focused their care recipients. A cross-sectional empirical study was conducted in Kolkata and Howrah districts of West Bengal. 131 family caregivers of demented person participated, and data were collected using pre-tested questionnaires. Care recipients’ incompetence to perform daily activities predicted the mental health condition of the caregivers. Significant association was found between anxiety and level of support provided by the caregivers. When involved in caregiving for many years and providing caregiving for 9 hours or fewer per day, caregivers are likely to experience adverse mental health condition. Caregiving is very challenging and it affects the psychological health of the caregivers. The health management of dementia caregivers should get priority in health system research.