This thesis investigated how perceptions about Alzheimer's disease affect the caregiving experience of informal caregivers using online discussion forums specifically it addressed the following research questions. 1) what are Latino and non-Latino informal caregivers' beliefs about their caregiving role? 2) What are the coping mechanisms they employ and 3) What are the challenges they face?
While there is ample research on caregiving and Alzheimer's disease, very few studies have been qualitatively conducted regarding the informal caregiving experiences of Latino and non-Latino informal caregivers who are caring for someone with Alzheimer's. Qualitative methods were used to analyze secondary data from online discussion groups in both English and Spanish. The researcher used content analysis to analyze the data, revealing patterns within the experiences and challenges shared by the informal caregivers, which served to organize the data so that meaning could be assigned to themes as they related to Latino and non-Latino caregiving experiences. Important themes were challenges with Activities of Daily Living (ADL's), behavioral problems and experiencing guilt. Other themes were using humor and prayer for coping mechanisms and putting their loved one before themselves. Overall it was found that Latinos and non-Latinos had more similarities than differences in their experiences.
|Commitee:||Chow, Christine, Claver, Maria|
|School:||California State University, Long Beach|
|Department:||Family and Consumer Sciences|
|School Location:||United States -- California|
|Source:||MAI 58/05M(E), Masters Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Gerontology, Information Technology, Ethnic studies, Epidemiology, Health care management|
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