Gender differences in anxiety and depression among the caregivers of patients with dementia


Background: Providing care to dementia patients itself poses risk of distress in bio-psychosocial paradigm. It is important to assess the mental health status and attend to the needs of caregivers. The present investigation focuses on gender differences related to anxiety and depression in caregivers of dementia patients. Methods: This cross-sectional study was carried out in an out-patient setting in the Dementia clinic of a tertiary care hospital. Sixty caregivers of consescutive dementia patients receiving outpatient care were assessed using the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS). Descriptive analysis was done to find in between group differences for the male and female caregivers and Pearson’s correlation coefficient was calculated to find the association between the number of family members with chronic illness and the scores on HADS. Results: Male and female care- givers differed significantly on the HADS—Total, Anxiety and Depression subscale scores with female care givers having significantly higher scores. There was a significant correlation between the number of family members with chronic illness and HADS-Anxiety subscale scores in female caregivers. Conclusion: It is crucial to screen caregivers, especially females, of patients with dementia for presence of anxiety and depression. This approach will help timely identification and proper management of these individuals. It is important to promote measures to soften the impact that the patient has on the caregiver, and that, at the same time, improves the quality of life of the patient.

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Verma, R. and Anand, K. (2012) Gender differences in anxiety and depression among the caregivers of patients with dementia. Advances in Alzheimer's Disease, 1, 17-21. doi: 10.4236/aad.2012.13003.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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