The relationships between coping strategies, social support and depression: an investigation among Turkish care-givers of patients with dementia
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Caring for a patient with dementia is a stressful life event, and care-givers carry a heavy psychological burden. However, the extent to which care-givers are affected by the stressful aspects of care-giving may depend on a variety of factors. This study examined the relationships between cognitive emotion regulation strategies, social support and depression among Turkish dementia care-givers. Research questions explored whether different coping strategies and social support were related to levels of depression, as well as whether social support moderated this relationship. We used a hierarchical multiple regression analysis consisting of three blocks as the primary statistical technique to examine our expectations. In total, 141 dementia care-givers (108 women, 33 men) were recruited to the study. The mean age of the sample was 59.74 years old (standard deviation=12.70). Hierarchical regression analysis indicated a significant negative main effect for positive refocusing strategies and significant positive main effects for catastrophising and blaming others. Social support moderated the relationships between catastrophising, rumination and symptoms of depression. Our results show that cognitive emotion regulation strategies and social support can play significant roles in alleviating care-giver depression. In the light of these results, it may be suggested that interventions focusing on the effects of positive refocusing, catastrophising and blaming others, as well as providing social support, may be helpful in alleviating depression in care-givers.