Anxiety symptoms among informal caregivers in 47 low- and middle-income countries: a cross-sectional analysis of community-based surveys.

Smith L., Shin J. I., Oh H., López Sánchez G. F., Underwood B., Jacob L., ...More

Journal of affective disorders, vol.298, pp.532-539, 2022 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 298
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.jad.2021.11.029
  • Journal Name: Journal of affective disorders
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, ASSIA, PASCAL, AgeLine, BIOSIS, CAB Abstracts, CINAHL, EMBASE, MEDLINE, Psycinfo, Veterinary Science Database
  • Page Numbers: pp.532-539
  • Keywords: Anxiety, Caregivers, Low-and middle-income countries, Epidemiology, SLEEP PROBLEMS, HEALTH, PREVALENCE, ASSOCIATION, DEPRESSION, DISORDERS, MORTALITY, DEMENTIA, ADULTS
  • Bezmialem Vakıf University Affiliated: Yes


Background: There are no multi-country studies on the association between informal caregiving and anxiety from low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). Therefore, we investigated this relationship in a large predominantly nationally representative sample from 47 LMICs. Methods: Cross sectional data from the World Health Survey were analyzed. Anxiety symptoms referred to severe or extreme problems with worries or anxiety in the past 30 days. Information on caregiving in the past 12 months was obtained. Multivariable logistic regression analysis adjusting for age, sex, marital status, education, household size, employment, disability, and country was conducted. Data on 237,952 individuals aged >= 18 years [mean (SD) age 38.4 (16.0) years; 50.8% female] were analyzed. Results: After adjustment for potential confounders, caregiving was positively associated with anxiety symptoms (OR = 1.52; 95%CI = 1.40, 1.65). Greater number of caregiving activities was associated with higher odds for anxiety symptoms dose-dependently, with the OR (95%CI) for engagement in 5 activities (vs. no caregiving) being 2.19 (1.86-2.58). Conclusion: Caregiving is associated with higher odds for anxiety symptoms among adults in LMICs. Given the increasing importance of informal caregivers in long-term care provision and the fact that good health of caregivers is vital to sustain this system, interventions to address mental health of caregivers in LMICs are urgently needed.