Characteristics And Well-Being Of Informal Caregivers: Results From A Nationally-Representative US Survey

ASU Author/Contributor (non-ASU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Erin Bouldin, Assistant Professor, PhD (Creator)
Appalachian State University (ASU )
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Abstract: Given ongoing concerns about high levels of burden reported among some informal caregivers, the goal of this study was to characterize their socio-demographics, health, and well-being. Using cross-sectional data from a large nationally representative survey in the United States (N= 438,712) we identified adults who provided informal care to friends or family members with a health problem, long-term illness, or disability. Descriptive statistics and propensity matching were used to characterize caregivers and compare their health and social support to socio-demographically-similar adults who were not caregivers. Logistic regression models examined associations between caregiving and respondents’ mental health, general health, perceived social support, and sleep problems. A total of 111,156 (25.3%) participants reported being caregivers, most of whom reported good mental health (90%) good general health (83%), and adequate social support (77%). After adjusting for respondents’ gender, caregivers reported worse mental health than non-caregivers (odds ratio (OR)= 1.35, 95% confidence interval (CI)= 1.31–1.39 for >15 days poor mental health in the past month) but better general health (OR= 0.96, 95%CI= 0.94–0.98 for fair or poor health). Men caregivers reported somewhat worse overall health than non-caregivers (OR= 1.09, 95%CI= 1.05–1.13) whereas women reported better overall health.

Additional Information

Trivedi, R., Beaver, K., Bouldin, E., Eugenio, E., Zeliadt, S., Nelson, K., Rosland, A., Szarka, J., Piette, J. (2014). "Characteristics and well-being of informal caregivers: Results from a nationally-representative US survey." Chronic Illness, Vol 10, Issue 3, pp. 167 - 179. Publisher version of record available at:
Language: English
Date: 2014
Caregiver, survey, informal caregiving

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