Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Health and Rehabilitation Sciences


Dr. Marita Kloseck



There are currently 500,000 people living with Alzheimer’s disease (AD) in Canada. It is estimated that the total costs associated with AD are 15 billion Canadian dollars per year. Informal caregivers across the nation provide an estimated 231 million hours of unpaid care annually. Individuals diagnosed with Amnestic Mild Cognitive Impairment (aMCI) have the highest rate of conversion to AD, with an average 5-year conversion rate from time of aMCI diagnosis. This study aimed to understand how carers of individuals recently diagnosed with aMCI experience the transition into their new role of care provider and what implications their new role has on carer well-being.

To explore the meaning of the experience of caring for a loved one with aMCI, a hermeneutic phenomenological investigation was used. Five carers created a narrative through in-depth interviewing which provided detailed and rich descriptions of their experiences. Data were analysed using van Manen’s methodological structure for human science inquiry. The essence of the experience of caring for a loved one recently diagnosed with aMCI is the need for the carer to wear multiple masks in order to cope with the accumulated multiple losses they suffer as they continually adjust to their new and evolving carer identity.



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