Loneliness and depression in spousal caregivers of those with Alzheimer's disease versus non-caregiving spouses

Rose A Beeson
Archives of Psychiatric Nursing 2003, 17 (3): 135-43
Loneliness as a factor in the development of depression in Alzheimer's disease (AD) spousal caregivers has been given little attention. In this sample, 49 AD caregiving spouses reported significantly higher levels of loneliness and depression than did 52 non-caregiving spouses. AD caregiving wives reported greater loss of self and significantly higher levels of loneliness and depression than did AD caregiving husbands. Loneliness was the only predictive variable for AD caregiver depression, explaining 49% of the total variance. To meet the mental health needs of AD caregiving spouses, loneliness must be addressed along with the development of nursing interventions.

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