Caregivers of brain-impaired persons report that the caregiving experience often is stressful to them. The caregiving stress model has been based primarily on stress associated with caring for persons with Alzheimer's disease. Relatively little information is available on stressors for caregivers of stroke victims, however, who could be expected to have different stressors based on the different underlying pathology. Caregivers of persons with stroke therefore were asked to respond to the Brain Impairment Behavior Inventory (BIBI) and the companion Brain Impairment Behavior Bother Scale (BIBBS) and to list the three most important stressors for them. The behaviors of the persons with stroke which were most stressful for this sample of caregivers were irritability, dependence with resulting caregiver confinement and immature behavior. Nursing interventions targeted toward alleviating the stress caused by these behaviors could include investigation of treatable causes of brain dysfunction, a search for triggers for irritability and bad temper, and use of community-based support systems such as stroke clubs.
Questions or comments about this article may be directed to Anne Williams. RN, PhD, College of Nursing. Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona, 85287–2602, She is an assistant professor.
© 1994 American Association of Neuroscience Nurses