Is depression in Alzheimer's caregivers really due to activity restriction? A preliminary mediational test of the Activity Restriction Model

J Behav Ther Exp Psychiatry. 2008 Dec;39(4):459-66. doi: 10.1016/j.jbtep.2007.12.001. Epub 2008 Jan 18.


This study is a preliminary examination of the Activity Restriction Model of depressive symptoms. A total of 16 elderly Alzheimer's caregivers and 9 non-caregivers completed measures of activity restriction and depressive symptoms. Mediation was tested using the Sobel test with bootstrapping procedures. Results indicated that caregivers experienced significant elevations in depressive symptoms and activity restriction relative to non-caregivers (p<0.05). Activity restriction significantly mediated the relationship between caregiving status and depressive symptoms (z=2.29, p=0.031), accounting for 86% of this relationship. Behavioral interventions for depression might be particularly relevant for Alzheimer's caregivers to reduce activity restriction and, thus, depressive symptoms.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Activities of Daily Living / psychology*
  • Aged
  • Alzheimer Disease* / nursing
  • Alzheimer Disease* / psychology
  • Attitude to Health
  • Caregivers / psychology*
  • Caregivers / statistics & numerical data
  • Control Groups
  • Cost of Illness*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Depression / diagnosis*
  • Depression / epidemiology
  • Depression / psychology
  • Female
  • Geriatric Assessment
  • Home Nursing
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Models, Psychological
  • Risk Factors
  • Social Behavior
  • Stress, Psychological / diagnosis
  • Stress, Psychological / epidemiology
  • Surveys and Questionnaires