show symptoms of depression with approximately a quarter to half of these caregivers meet the diagnostic criteria for major depression.


Being a caregiver can be physically and emotionally stressful. When taking care of a loved one, caregivers often put other's needs before their own.  Caregivers often sacrifice a lot of time, energy and their own physical and emotional needs which could lead to stress, anxiety, and/or depression.

Signs and Symptoms of Depression in Caregivers3

  • Avoiding pleasurable or meaningful activities because you feel guilty about taking time off from caretaking
  • Repetitive nightmares or intrusive thoughts about the patient/loved one, including the diagnosis, treatments, or future prognosis
  • Inability to sleep
  • Feelings of exhaustion, severe tiredness
  • Feelings of tension
  • Inability to concentrate or remember details
  • Anxiety attacks about not properly following the medical regimen
  • Inability to talk to others about your experience as a caretaker
  • Anticipatory anxiety about future treatments for the patient/loved one
  • Inability to enjoy activities you once found pleasurable
  • Thoughts of suicide because you feel so overwhelmed, worthless, or inadequate
  • Chronic irritability

If you or someone you know are experiencing any of these signs and symptoms, please consult your doctor or contact a mental health provider here.

Click here for more information about depression.


Anxiety disorders are real, serious medical conditions - such as heart disease or diabetes. Anxiety disorders are the most common and pervasive mental disorders in the United States. Loss of control, fear of a loved one's well-being, uncertainty about the future or worrying about healthcare finances can all become extremely overwhelming for caregivers and can result in anxiety and stress.

Signs and Symptoms of Anxiety in Caregivers2 

  • Constant fearfulness, worry or impending doom
  • Depression that lasts longer than two weeks
  • Trouble eating
  • Shortness of breath that keeps coming back
  • Sleep problems
  • Heart racing or beating hard in the chest
  • Constant irritability
  • Excessive sweating

If you or someone you know are experiencing any of these signs and symptoms, please consult your doctor or contact a mental health provider here.

Click here for tips on managing anxiety and stress.

ADAA Resources

ADAA's Online Support Group

ADAA HU Mobile App_0.jpgADAA’s anonymous peer-to-peer online anxiety and depression support group is a friendly, safe and supportive place for individuals and their families to share information and experiences. As a member you can connect with other people experiencing anxiety and depression and related disorders, contribute to ongoing conversations or start your own conversation with a question or a post about your journey. Click here to learn more. 

Click here to Subscribe Today


ADAA Grupo de Apoyo en Línea

Apreta aquí para aprender más.

Haga clic aquí para suscribirse hoy


Other Resources

Trending Articles

  1. Caregiver. 2002. Caregiver Depression: A Silent Health Crisis.
  2. Help for Cancer Caregivers. Anxiety. 
  3. Mayo Clinic. Caregiver Depression: Prevention Counts.