INTRODUCTION: This study analyzes the effects that a mindfulness development meditation program has on psychological discomfort and overload in main family caregivers of Alzheimer dementia patients.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: A quasi-experimental (group comparison) design with pretest/post-test/follow-up measurements was employed in an experimental and a control group. The evaluation instruments used were the SCL-90-R Questionnaire and the Caregiver Overload Scale.
RESULTS: The statistical analyses done show a significant reduction in the three general indices and in the various dimensions of psychological discomfort, as well as in the caregiver overload variable in the experimental group compared to the control group at the end of the intervention. However, the improvements found in the experimental group were lower in the follow-up evaluation done four months after intervention, with significantly higher scores than in post-test in all the dimensions.
CONCLUSIONS: These results are in agreement with other studies in which it was found that intervention for Alzheimer caregivers is effective in the short term, but the effect becomes diluted over time, so measurements and policies for these caregivers have to enable the beneficial effects of intervention reducing psychological discomfort and overload to be maintained.
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