Date of Award
Subjective memory may help practitioners understand who pursues assessment and treatment for memory concerns. Two factors that are related to subjective memory are depressive affect and fear of dementia, and two groups of older adults who may be susceptible to these factors are first-degree relatives and care providers of patients with dementia. This study seeks to determine how depressive affect and fear of dementia influence the subjective memory of these two groups. Fifty-five adults ages 55 and older who were a care provider and/or first-degree relative of patients with dementia reported their perceptions of their own memory, feelings of depression, and dementia worry on a Qualtrics questionnaire. I anticipated that depressive affect would be a stronger predictor of subjective memory in care providers than in first-degree relatives, whereas dementia worry would be a stronger predictor of subjective memory in first-degree relatives than in care providers. Additionally, I hypothesized that the relationships between subjective memory and both depression and dementia worry would be strongest for individuals who are both first-degree relatives and care providers. Overall, my hypotheses regarding differential patterns of relationships across groups was not supported. However, results showed that depression was the strongest predictor of subjective memory, regardless of group affiliation. Correlation analyses also revealed strong relationships between fear of dementia and depression among both care providers and first-degree relatives. By better understanding the lack of influence of a fear of dementia and the strong influence of depression on the subjective memory of these two populations, clinicians may be better equipped to support older adults with memory concerns.
Tiberi, Cassidy Marie, "Determinants of Subjective Memory In First-Degree Relatives and Care Providers of Individuals with Dementia" (2021). Undergraduate Honors Thesis Collection. 558.