Family care of Alzheimer victims: An analysis of the adolescent experience

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The burden of caregiver stress has been well documented in the literature. While attention has been paid to caregiving spouses and adult children, few studies have examined the impact of family caregiving on adolescents. With the rise in adult child caregivers simultaneously raising children of their own, increasingly greater numbers of young adults will be involved in caring for Alzheimer's type dementia (ATD) victims. This study examined the characteristics and experiences of these young adults. Specifically, 14 adolescents aged 14-18 were interviewed and asked a series of semi-structured questions regarding theirfeelings of burden and satisfaction as they related to caregiving. Employing features of content analysis methodology, all interviews were audiorecorded and transcribed. The results merged intofive primary categories:

These results are discussed within the context of developing support group interventionsforcaregiving adolescents.

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