Immediate and lagged effects of daily stress and affect on caregivers' daily pain experience
Using secondary data analysis of DaSH (R01AG031758, S. Zarit, PI), we examined the effect of daily stress, affect, and adult day service (ADS) use on the daily subjective pain experience among caregivers of individuals with dementia (IWD). Participants were interviewed for 8 consecutive days. Caregivers utilized an ADS program on some days and provided care at home on other days. We hypothesized a significant relation between daily stress and daily pain would be moderated by time-varying positive affect (PA) and negative affect (NA) within and beyond ADS use. Participants were 173 family caregivers of IWDs using ADS more than 2 days per week. Participants with IWDs diagnosed with “mild cognitive impairment” were excluded. Daily telephone interviews assessed stress, affect, and pain. Multilevel models were used to examine the relation between daily stress and daily pain and moderating effects of other daily experiences within the context of ADS use. Multilevel models revealed a significant relation between care-related and non-care related stress and daily bodily pain. ADS use and affect did not predict daily pain. Lagged effects revealed a significant moderation for the relation between ADS use and positive affect and pain such that positive affect was higher and pain was lower following an ADS day. Findings suggest that further studies are warranted for understanding and controlling pain among caregivers. Addressing the physical health needs of caregivers through pain management interventions may improve the overall wellbeing of caregiving dyads.