Physical health has been commonly regarded as an outcome in caregiving research; however, it may act as a predictor of depressive symptoms of caregivers. This current study investigated the relationship between physical health and depression in family caregivers of persons with Alzheimer's disease. Also, it examined caregiving self-efficacy as a possible mediator of the relationship. One hundred thirty-four family caregivers were interviewed. The caregivers self-reported their current physical health status, depressive symptoms, and perceived self-efficacy. Using a self-efficacy measure consisting of three subscales, path analyses were conducted to specifically assess these domains of caregiving self-efficacy. The results showed that poorer perceived physical health was directly and indirectly associated with increased depressive symptoms. The indirect path was mediated by the specific domain of caregivers' self-efficacy. These findings suggest that caregiving self-efficacy may function as a mechanism through which perceived physical health influences depressive symptoms, and this mechanism can be domain-specific. Copyright © 2010 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.
CitationAu, A., Lau, K.-M., Sit, E., Cheung, G., Lai, M.-K., Wong, S. K. A., & Fok, D. (2010). The role of self-efficacy in the Alzheimer's family caregiver stress process: A partial mediator between physical health and depressive symptoms. Clinical Gerontologist, 33(4), 298-315. doi: 10.1080/07317115.2010.502817
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Dementia caregivers
- Depressive symptoms
- Physical health