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Published online: 2024-04-23

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Mental health of family caregivers: does the complimentary roles of personality trait, social support and resilience matter?

Obinna Osita Ike1, Ifeoma Juliet Nwufo1, Peace Chisaokwu Adubi1

Abstract

Background: Caregivers form an integral informal workforce that is usually overlooked, undervalued and faces challenges such as maintaining optimal wellbeing and caring role. This present study investigated the roles of personality, social support and resilience on the mental health of family caregivers.

Participants and methods: The study based on self-report measures of the Big Five Personality Inventory, Social Support Scale, Resilience Scale and General Health Questionnaire adopted a descriptive cross-sectional design. The participants for the study were 250 caregivers. Hierarchical multiple regression was used for data analysis.

Results: Results showed that the dimensions of big five personality traits neuroticism (β = −0.15, p < 0.05), extraversion (β = 0.16, p < 0.05), openness to experience (β = 0.17, p < 0.05), conscientiousness (β = 0.15, p < 0.05) and agreeableness (β = 0.13, p < 0.05) significantly associated with family caregivers’ mental health. In addition, social support (β = 0.13, p < 0.05) and resilience (β = 0.13, p < 0.05) were positively associated with mental health of caregivers.

Conclusions: Families, providers of health care, hospital management and policy makers in health care sector should take cognizance of these endogenous and exogenous factors (e.g., social support, personality traits and resilience) in the development of intervention and support services for both existing and potential health caregivers. This is pertinent since their mental health is dependent on the positive correlation among these variables of interest.

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