Statistics show that 34.2 million people provide care to an aging family member or friend. You may offer the care because it seems like the right thing to do. It can also be some of the hardest work you’ll ever do.
It’s estimated that unpaid caregivers spend as much as 34.5 hours each week providing care. The common care tasks include preparing meals, driving parents around, reminding them to take medications, and keeping the house clean. About 13 hours each month are spent paying bills, managing finances, and scheduling appointments.
If you aren’t careful, caregiver burnout can negatively impact your mental and physical health. Here are some examples of health issues family caregivers experienced.
Depression is Common
After leaving her job in her 50s to care for her ailing father, one woman struggled with the loss of health care and a regular income. When he passed away five years later, she discovered no one wanted to hire a woman who was almost 60. She couldn’t find a job. Her retirement income dwindled, and she couldn’t afford to go to the doctor as she had minimal coverage.
The harder she tried to find a new job, the more depressed she became. After years of being a working woman, she was draining her reserves fast and couldn’t afford to get help for the depression that was worsening.
Putting Off Appointments Can Be Disastrous
Pat spent years caring for a mom with dementia. As her days and nights involved constantly supervising her mom, she didn’t stop to go to the doctor. One day, her mom pushed her out the way and she broke her arm in the fall.
X-rays found the break, and it was going to require surgery to repair it. Subsequent tests also found that her bones were thinning due to osteoporosis. Doctors advised her it was time to focus on improving her own health and hiring help for her mom.
He Found He Just Didn’t Have the Energy Anymore
Rob cared for his dad after his dad fell. He moved in and helped out with the things his dad couldn’t do independently. He worked all day, came home and cooked dinner, and helped his dad with the required medications just before bedtime.
After months of working an eight-hour day and coming home and working more hours, Rob burned out. He woke to the alarm one morning. As he was getting breakfast, his hands went numb and tingly. His heart was pounding, and he felt dizzy and nauseous. When he started having chest pain, he called 911. It wasn’t a heart attack as he feared, he learned he’d just had his first anxiety attack. Doctors said he was doing too much and needed to get his stress under control.
Respite care is one service a senior care agency can help you arrange. While you take breaks to remain healthy and rested, professional caregivers, help your parents. Call a senior care agency to learn more about respite care.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring Homecare in Bryn Mawr, PA, please contact the friendly staff at Suma Home Care.
Call today: (484) 206-4544
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