An exploration of close relatives' experience of help-seeking for dementia

Maddocks, C. (2012) An exploration of close relatives' experience of help-seeking for dementia. D.Clin.Psychol. thesis, Canterbury Christ Church University.

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A qualitative investigation was conducted to explore close relatives’ experiences of symptom recognition and help-seeking for dementia. Nine participants took part in a one-to-one interview. The interviews were semi-structured and aimed to address the following topics: symptom recognition and the process of seeking information and support. Interview transcripts were analysed using interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA). Three superordinate themes emerged from the analysis: ‘Developing the courage to act’, ‘Naming the elephant in the room’ and ‘Repositioning’. Findings highlighted how participants shifted from a position of having unspoken fears about their relatives’ symptoms to a point where they were able to address these fears and help their family member to seek help. Participants were engaged in developing representations of dementia, in line with research on the common sense model of illness representations (CSM). The findings highlighted potential areas of improvement for dementia services in the UK, including the provision of greater support for close relatives (e.g. psychological assessment and intervention). Further research, on a larger scale, is needed to determine whether the CSM provides a useful framework for understanding help-seeking for dementia.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Uncontrolled Keywords: dementia, family carers, help seeking, interpretative phenomenological analysis
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology > BF0076.5 Psychology research
H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Woman
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0435 Psychiatry > RC0512 Psychopathology. Mental disorders > RC0521 Dementia
Divisions: pre Nov-2014 > Faculty of Social and Applied Sciences > Applied Psychology
Depositing User: Mrs Kathy Chaney
Date Deposited: 15 Jan 2013 14:51
Last Modified: 28 Sep 2016 13:21

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Last edited: 29/06/2016 12:23:00