Abstract

The purpose of this study was to gain understanding of the nature of the daily occupations of caregivers for family members with dementia as related to the caregivers’ perceptions of well-being. Qualitative telephone interviews, focused on the experience of caregiving, were conducted with 33 caregiver–respondents; the data were transcribed and analyzed using a phenomenological approach. Everyday occupation emerged as a phenomenon that was central to the caregivers’ ways of evaluating and monitoring well-being in the care receivers and themselves. Further, occupational engagement served to help mitigate the potential biographical disruption of the dementia caregiving experience. The implications for occupational therapy personnel are convincing: Everyday occupation holds promise for contributing to the relative well-being of both caregivers and care receivers and for facilitating continuity of relationships and identity for the caregiver.

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