Purpose of reviewFamily burden research has primarily focused on severe mental disorders. Despite the high prevalence and chronic disabling nature of anxiety disorders, family burden has been relatively neglected in our understanding of their impact on caregivers. The paper reviews the available evidence on caregivers' burden in different anxiety disorders.FindingsObsessive-compulsive disorder and posttraumatic stress disorder are the only anxiety disorders that have been studied in this regard, while there is a significant lack of data about other anxiety disorders. Caregiver burden in obsessive-compulsive disorder is equivalent to that of severe mental disorders like schizophrenia and affective disorders. Spouses/partners and children experience a significant degree of burden in looking after their relatives with posttraumatic stress disorder.SummaryAvailable limited data indicates an adverse impact on families looking after their relatives with anxiety disorders such as obsessive-compulsive disorder and posttraumatic stress disorder. There is an urgent need for further research to increase our understanding of family burden and, accordingly, to support families involved in the care of patients with anxiety disorders. The impact of caregiver burden on disease and recovery in anxiety disorders also needs to be addressed in future research.
|Journal||Current Opinion in Psychiatry|
|Publication status||Published - 2008|