There are currently 550,000 carers in England, who provide essential primary care to individuals living with a diagnosis of dementia. This study will help individuals taking part to identify any current stress they might be under, the factors which may be affecting it, and how it may be improved.

We caught up with Amelia Stone, Chief investigator on this study, to find out more:

What are the main aims of the study?

The main aims of this study are to investigate how certain coping styles, physical activity and level of social support can affect the psychological stress of individuals caring for people with dementia. It is thought that people with more adaptive styles of coping vs non-adaptive styles of coping are less likely to experience psychological stress. People with increased social support are also thought to experience less psychological stress.

Amelia Stone, Chief Investigator on this study

Amelia Stone, Chief Investigator on this study

What does it involve for a participant?

This study simply requires the participant to fill out a short questionnaire regarding their coping strategies, social support and physical activity, as well as a questionnaire that asks about their psychological wellbeing. There are no further requirements placed upon the participants.

How long is the study for?

The study will be running until June at the moment but there is potential for the study to remain open for longer.

What do you hope the outcomes of the study will be?

It is hoped that the results of this study will give more of an insight into how individuals who care for people with dementia cope on a daily basis and how their social support networks help them with their role.

The data gathered from this study will be used to predict when a carer may be feeling increasingly stressed and how these feelings can be alleviated by giving education regarding more adaptive coping techniques and more information on accessing social support.

It is also hoped that this study will make more people aware of the demanding role of a carer, to increase wider support for these individuals.

Furthermore, another hope is that there will be a link with physical activity and psychological stress in this group, but as yet there is little evidence in the literature to suggest this.

This study could lead to another strategy that could help to alleviate stress in this group and ensure that carers can support individuals for longer and thus prevent the need for long-term residential care.

Where is the study based?

The study is currently based in England and Wales, mostly around the Bristol and West of England area.

Who can take part?

Participants must be informal carers (i.e. not earning money for their caring role). There is no age restriction and no further eligibility criteria.

Lady-LookingatleafletYou can see if you are eligible for this study, as well as others around the nation, by logging into your Join Dementia Research account.

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