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The Relationship Between Care-Recipient Behaviors and Spousal Caregiving Stress

Archived Abstract of Former PSC Researcher

Ingersoll-Dayton, Berit, and M. Raschick. 2004. "The Relationship Between Care-Recipient Behaviors and Spousal Caregiving Stress." Gerontologist, 44(3): 318-327.

Purpose: This study examines gender differences in spousal caregiver stress associated with care-recipient problem behaviors and helping behaviors. Design and Methods: Using data from the National Long-Term Care Survey, we examined bivariate and multivariate relationships between the behaviors of care recipients and the stress experienced by their spouses. Results: Gender differences in caregiver stress emerged with respect to problem behaviors and helping behaviors of the care recipient. Helping behaviors had a moderating effect on the relationship between care-recipient problem behaviors and stress for caregiving husbands, but not for caregiving wives. Implications: As practitioners attempt to reduce spousal caregiving distress, they should assess the extent to which care recipient's problem behaviors and efforts to be helpful contribute to caregiver stress.

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