Title

The Impact of Carefiving on Lifestyle Balance on Elderly Women

Presenter Information

Leslie Blessing

Start Time

16-10-2002 12:00 AM

End Time

18-10-2002 12:00 AM

Abstract

Elderly female caregivers shoulder responsibilities that put them at risk for developing physical, emotional, psychological, social, and financial difficulties. It is often assumed that the burdens associated with caregiving have a direct, negative impact on caregiver wellbeing. While previous studies have examined caregiver well-being in the context of caregiver burden, this study compared the relative well-being of elderly female caregivers with that of non-caregivers using life-style balance as a means of evaluation. Lifestyle balance was defined as a satisfying and health promoting pattern of regular occupations. Lifestyle balance was measured quantitatively in terms of relative satisfaction with occupations considered personally important to well-being. Thirty-seven volunteers, 15 caregivers and 22 non-caregivers, completed surveys that asked them to rate 31 different occupations on a scale of 1-5 in terms of the importance of that activity to their personal sense of well-being and also how satisfied they are with their participation in that occupation. For the purposes of this study, an occupation was considered important to well being if it received an importance rating of 4 or 5. While there was some overlap between caregivers and non-caregivers in terms of which occupations they rated important to wellbeing, caregivers, as a group, rated more than twice as many occupations important to wellbeing than did non-caregivers. Caregivers rated caregiving occupations important to wellbeing, while non-caregivers did not. Relative satisfaction with important occupations, and thus lifestyle balance, was found to be comparable between the two groups of participants. These findings underscore the importance of the personal meaning of an occupation as it relates to the impact of that occupation on an individual’s well-being. The findings also support the use of a strengths perspective when working with elderly female caregivers. These individuals frequently demonstrate competence and creativity in their efforts to cope with the demands of the caregiving role. This study also introduces the Occupational Balance: a Lifestyle Inventory, an instrument which is useful in assessing and modifying lifestyle balance in people of all ages and all walks of life.

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Oct 16th, 12:00 AM Oct 18th, 12:00 AM

The Impact of Carefiving on Lifestyle Balance on Elderly Women

Elderly female caregivers shoulder responsibilities that put them at risk for developing physical, emotional, psychological, social, and financial difficulties. It is often assumed that the burdens associated with caregiving have a direct, negative impact on caregiver wellbeing. While previous studies have examined caregiver well-being in the context of caregiver burden, this study compared the relative well-being of elderly female caregivers with that of non-caregivers using life-style balance as a means of evaluation. Lifestyle balance was defined as a satisfying and health promoting pattern of regular occupations. Lifestyle balance was measured quantitatively in terms of relative satisfaction with occupations considered personally important to well-being. Thirty-seven volunteers, 15 caregivers and 22 non-caregivers, completed surveys that asked them to rate 31 different occupations on a scale of 1-5 in terms of the importance of that activity to their personal sense of well-being and also how satisfied they are with their participation in that occupation. For the purposes of this study, an occupation was considered important to well being if it received an importance rating of 4 or 5. While there was some overlap between caregivers and non-caregivers in terms of which occupations they rated important to wellbeing, caregivers, as a group, rated more than twice as many occupations important to wellbeing than did non-caregivers. Caregivers rated caregiving occupations important to wellbeing, while non-caregivers did not. Relative satisfaction with important occupations, and thus lifestyle balance, was found to be comparable between the two groups of participants. These findings underscore the importance of the personal meaning of an occupation as it relates to the impact of that occupation on an individual’s well-being. The findings also support the use of a strengths perspective when working with elderly female caregivers. These individuals frequently demonstrate competence and creativity in their efforts to cope with the demands of the caregiving role. This study also introduces the Occupational Balance: a Lifestyle Inventory, an instrument which is useful in assessing and modifying lifestyle balance in people of all ages and all walks of life.