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Song Y, McCurry SM, Fung CH, Josephson KR, Teng E, Irwin MR, Alessi CA, Martin JL. Sleep and Caregiving Experiences among Caregivers of Veterans in an Adult Day Health Care Program: A Pilot Study. Clinical Gerontologist. 2018 Mar 1; 41(2):167-171.
OBJECTIVES: This pilot study explored caregivers' attitudes toward core elements of a behavioral sleep intervention for managing sleep problems of older veteran care recipients and the caregivers, as an initial step for developing a dyadic sleep intervention program. METHODS: Five caregivers (all women; age range, 66-75 years) participated in a focus group discussion. Data were collected at one Veterans Affairs, adult day health care program. RESULTS: Caregivers' poor sleep was not necessarily explained by their caregiving responsibility. Caregivers felt that behavioral recommendations regarding sleep compression scheduling, increased indoor physical activity, and outdoor light exposure would be acceptable sleep interventions for themselves and the care recipients. Some challenges to the sleep recommendation were identified and they included limiting naptime of care recipients and change of their current sleep schedule. CONCLUSIONS: Caregivers are receptive to some key components of behavioral approaches to improving sleep. Tailored sleep recommendation strategy is needed to address potential challenges. CLINICAL IMPLICATIONS: If available within clinical care settings or delivered at the patient's home, caregivers of older veterans are likely to engage in behavioral sleep intervention programs.