Impact of caregiver burden on quality of life for parents of adult children with autism spectrum disorder

Document Type


Publication Date



Social Work

Publication Title

American Journal on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities


This study sought to examine the impact of time, developmental, emotional, and financial burdens on the quality of life (QOL) for parents (aged 50þ) of an adult child with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Participants (N ¼ 320) completed a web-based survey and could indicate interest in participating in one-on-one follow up interviews. Multiple linear regression analysis indicated that two variables, developmental burden and impact of caregiving on finances, were statistically significant predictors of parents’ QOL. Developmental burden was the strongest predictor of parental QOL, demonstrating an inverse relationship. Qualitatively, reported findings indicated that many parents were experiencing all four burdens. Findings highlighted the need to provide services and supports to alleviate burden among aging parents of adult children with ASD.

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