Decreasing Stress Through Education for Caregivers of Community-Dwelling Individuals with Dementia
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People with dementia experience a decline in mental ability that interferes with daily life. The behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia affect the majority of individuals suffering from dementia and cause negative health outcomes, contribute to caregiver stress, decrease quality of life, increase rate of institutionalization, and increase healthcare cost. The purpose of this evidence-based quality improvement project was to determine if providing resources and education on psychosocial interventions for management of the behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia decreases stress, as measured by the Zarit Burden Interview questionnaire, among caregivers of community-dwelling individuals with dementia in the outpatient primary care setting. The project utilized a one group pretest and posttest design with a convenience sample of three participants. The small project sample size did not allow for comparison data analysis, and the limited results were varied in the burden scores with two of the three participants showing lower caregiver stress scores after the educational intervention. Assessing and alleviating stress by involving caregivers in the management of behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia has the potential to ensure the health of the caregiver and the care recipient and decrease the rates of institutionalization rates of individuals with dementia.
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