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Title: Causal attributions, knowledge of dementia and psychological well-being in caregivers of people with dementia
Author: Roberts, Fiona
Awarding Body: University of London
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 1999
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Clinical work with older people often involves the provision of information to those who care for a relative with dementia. Caregivers who have a greater understanding of dementia in general have been shown to experience lower levels of depression but higher levels of anxiety. However, studies have frequently found that information groups on their own fail to reduce caregiver distress. This study explored the relationship between information and caregiver distress. It also examined a possible factor which may mediate between the two; pessimistic causal attributional style, on the basis that this factor has been shown to be predictive of later distress in caregivers. Quantitative measures were used in a quasi-experimental design to explore the relationships between these variables within a group of 37 caregivers for individuals with dementia. The results indicated that dementia knowledge does have some relationship to the well-being of caregivers in terms of lower scores on the GHQ and SASS. The research identified that knowing about the aetiology of dementia may be particularly important in moderating caregiver distress. The results did not support the hypothesis that causal attributions may mediate between knowing about dementia and caregiver well-being, but did find some correlations between the measures of causal attribution and caregiver well-being. The discussion makes some recommendations about how the effectiveness of information giving strategies might be improved in the light of these findings.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available