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Correlate of burden and coping ability of caregivers of older adults with chronic illness in Nigeria

Aim: Caring for older adults with chronic illness is associated with enormous physical and psychological stress on the informal caregivers. This study assessed burden experienced by caregivers of older adults with chronic illness, explored coping strategies of caregivers in relation to identified chronic conditions and determined the influence of caregiver's burden, caregiver's characteristics and older adult's characteristics on their coping ability.; Method: This is a cross-sectional, correlational study, and data were collected among 325 caregivers of older adults living with chronic illness in Osun State, Nigeria, using a checklist, Katz IADL, Zarit Burden Interview and Brief Cope Scale. Data were analysed using descriptive and inferential statistics.; Findings: Results revealed that the age of the caregivers ranged between 19 and 70 years with a mean of 47.79 (±11.94). They were caring for older adults with heart diseases (47.7%), kidney diseases (8.0%), cancer (10.2%), gastrointestinal disorders (5.5%), stroke (18.5%), diabetes mellitus (10.2%) who had partial (60.9%) to total level of dependency (39.1%). Over 59% of caregivers experienced severe burden, which is associated with religion (p < 0.001). Coping strategies used include religion (7.37 ± 0.85), planning (6.70 ± 0.89), positive reframing (6.42 ± 1.01) and emotion-focused coping (29.97 ± 3.30), which was the most used coping domain. Caregiver's burden was a predictor of emotion-focused (β = -0.16), problem-focused (β = -0.15), dysfunctional (β = -0.14) and the total coping score (β = -0.48). In addition, religion predicted emotion-focused coping (β = 0.69).; Conclusion: This study concluded that caregiving activities impose a severe burden on the caregivers. Religion was the most used, and coping ability is predicted by burden and religion. Therefore, healthcare providers should consider interventions to promote the use of effective coping skills.

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Type of Reference
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Journal article
Taylor & Francis
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Journal Titles
Scandinavian Journal Of Caring Sciences
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