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Caregiving in Dementia

Caregiving can include the monitoring of the status of a person in need, responsibility for accessing and communicating with health care professionals and the comprehensive direct care of the person (nutritional, organizational, functional, financial....).

  • absence of caregiver(s) and higher perceived caregiver burden are major predictors of earlier institutionalization of those with dementia [2]

  • caregiver burden is defined as the physical, emotional and financial toll of providing care that can lead to increased illnesses, depression and mortality in those providing care [1]

  • up to 50% of caregivers experience psychiatric symptoms during their caregiving but many also report a sense of accomplishment in keeping their loved ones at home [2]

  • The Alzheimer Society of Canada provides ten warning signs of caregiver stress along with strategies to help reduce this stress 

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1. Mendez MF, Cummings JL. Dementia: a clinical approach. 3rd ed. Philadelphia (PA): Elsevir Inc; 2003.

2. Patterson CJS, Gauthier S, Bergman H, Cohen CA, Feightner JW, Feldman H, Hogan DB. The recognition, assessment and management of dementing disorders: conclusions from the Canadian Consensus Conference on Dementia. Canadian Medical Association Journal 1999; 160 Suppl 12:S1-15.

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