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Clínica y Salud

On-line version ISSN 2174-0550Print version ISSN 1130-5274


MANSO MARTINEZ, Mª Esperanza; SANCHEZ LOPEZ, Mª del Pilar  and  CUELLAR FLORES, Isabel. Health and perceived overload in people involved in family care in a rural area. Clínica y Salud [online]. 2013, vol.24, n.1, pp.37-45. ISSN 2174-0550.

The objectives of this paper are to know the characteristics of caregivers in two rural areas, to know if their health is worse than that of non-caregivers, and to determine the variables related to their perception of the burden. The study uses a non-experimental, observational design, i.e., case vs. control with 88 caregivers and 81 non-caregivers. The following variables were analyzed: sociodemographic, health and psychological well-being characteristics (GHQ 12, HAD-T, HAD-A, HAD-A), social support (Duke-UNC), head scale (Zarit), and Barthel Index. Differences between female caregivers and control group appear in the amount of illnesses, health consultations, psychological distress, anxiety, depression level and perceived social support. The subjective overload for female caregivers was related to the degree of functional incapacity of the person being cared, hours of care and mental health variables. In men it was related to mental health variables. The anxiety and the social support predict 31.8% of the variability of the perceived burden. The results obtained confirm the impact on the health of caregivers.

Keywords : Caregivers; Perceived overload; Health effects of caregiving.

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