Caregiving for an elderly loved one can have a significant impact on your mental and physical health. Find out what tools are available to help family carers like yourself deal with the health and stress issues that can arise from providing care. Taking care of your loved ones can be a challenging journey consider hiring home support services Phoenixville.
Jim’s experience highlights the growing problem of carer stress.
Jim Colozzo’s mother, then 79 years old, woke up one morning unable to move her legs. Colozzo brought his mother home instead of putting her in an assisted living facility, despite the fact that her prognosis was poor.
Inquiring, “Do you know what you’re in for?” the doctor questioned his preparedness.
Colozzo was confident in his bright notion. He was used to helping his mother get out of bed and into a wheelchair because he was already living with her. Unfortunately, a rapid decrease in her health would raise his caring responsibilities considerably. Colozzo anticipated having to lift his mother several times throughout the day to assist her with basic hygiene tasks like bathing, dressing, and toileting.
He had no idea that being a full-time caretaker would have such a negative impact on his own health.
Consequences of caregiving on mental and physical health
Caregiving has been shown to have negative effects on one’s mental and physical health, including the development of long-term disorders, including depression and anxiety.
Caregivers’ Chronic Illnesses
In the AARP’s survey, “2020 Caregiving in the United States,” only 4 out of 10 carers reported feeling in “excellent or very good” health. As of 2015, 48% of carers reported being in excellent health; in 2018, that number has dropped significantly.
53% of carers had been diagnosed with two or more chronic diseases, such as heart disease, kidney disease, or diabetes, lending credence to their reports of poor health. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, this is 14% greater than the rate in the general adult population of the United States (CDC). Caregiver life expectancy is shortened by several chronic illnesses.
Reports on the health of carers
Family carers across the United States, like Jim Colozzo, have reported feeling the same way about the impact caregiving has had on their own health.
According to the CDC, most carers experience stress, despair, and emotional issues at least twice a month. Incredibly, close to 15% state that they deal with these issues at least 14 days a month.
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