Religious and spiritual dimensions of the Vietnamese dementia caregiving experience

W Ladson Hinton, Jane Nhauyen Tran, Cindy Tran, Devon Hinton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


This article focuses on the role of religion and spirituality in dementia caregiving among Vietnamese refugee families. In-depth qualitative interviews were conducted with nine Vietnamese caregivers of persons with dementia, then tape-recorded, transcribed, and analyzed for emergent themes. Caregivers related their spirituality/religion to three aspects of caregiving: 1) their own suffering; 2) their motivations for providing care; and 3) their understanding of the nature of the illness. Key terms or idioms were used to articulate spiritual/religious dimensions of the caregivers' experience, which included sacrifice, compassion, karma, blessings, grace, and peace of mind. In their narratives, the caregivers often combined multiple strands of different religions and/or spiritualities: Animism, Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism, and Catholicism. Case studies are presented to illustrate the relationship between religion/spirituality and the domains of caregiving. These findings have relevance for psychotherapeutic interventions with ethnically diverse populations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)139-160
Number of pages22
JournalHallym International Journal of Aging
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2008


  • Caregiving
  • Dementia
  • Religion
  • Spirituality
  • Vietnamese

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aging
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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