The role of self-efficacy in the Alzheimer's family caregiver stress process: A partial mediator between physical health and depressive symptoms

May Lan Alma Mary Gerardina Au, Kam Mei Lau, Ella Sit, George Cheung, Man Kin Lai, Sze Ki Anges Wong, Dorcas Fok

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)


Physical health has been commonly regarded as an outcome in caregiving research; however, it may act as a predictor of depressive symptoms of caregivers. This current study investigated the relationship between physical health and depression in family caregivers of persons with Alzheimer's disease. Also, it examined caregiving self-efficacy as a possible mediator of the relationship. One hundred thirty-four family caregivers were interviewed. The caregivers self-reported their current physical health status, depressive symptoms, and perceived self-efficacy. Using a self-efficacy measure consisting of three subscales, path analyses were conducted to specifically assess these domains of caregiving self-efficacy. The results showed that poorer perceived physical health was directly and indirectly associated with increased depressive symptoms. The indirect path was mediated by the specific domain of caregivers' self-efficacy. These findings suggest that caregiving self-efficacy may function as a mechanism through which perceived physical health influences depressive symptoms, and this mechanism can be domain-specific.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)298-315
Number of pages18
JournalClinical Gerontologist
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 7 Sep 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Health(social science)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Gerontology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology

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