Caregiver statistics are true eye-openers to those who have yet to experienced it. Sixty five percent of care recipients are female, with an average age of 69.4. In 2021, the estimated economic value of family caregivers’ unpaid contributions was approximately $600 billion. Over 70% of caregivers over the age of 70 die before their care recipients. According to Stanford Medicine 40% of Alzheimer’s caregivers die before the patient.
The Importance of Taking Care Of Yourself
It is important to take care of oneself. Psychology Today has excellent suggestions:
- Find time for yourself. Schedule a part of each day to watch the news, read the newspaper, or meditate. Connect with your inner self, either spiritually or by removing all distractions.
- “Permit” yourself to shower, eat a snack, or visit with loved ones. Grab twenty minutes to enjoy a walk, strengthening your body and immune system.
- Shed guilt. If a caregiver feels guilty about what is or is not done in helping another, depression easily begins. Forgive yourself. Close the door on negativity and recognize positivity. If it is necessary to get away for a period of time, look into local respite opportunities.
- Only do what is possible. Delegate some tasks to loved ones and friends. Remember, you are only one person. Admit to personal limits.
- Join a support group. As more and more caregivers exist, options to share ideas, responsibilities, and conversation increase. Visit with a professional or a clergy person if privacy is desired.
- Inhale deeply through your nose and exhale slowly and gently through the mouth. Not every day will be the same, but a caregiver still needs to breathe.
Get The Care You Need
Bridge to Better Living understands the stress and difficulties caregivers face. Bridge to Better Living listens, takes whatever time is needed, and never pressures a client. Begin the conversation about a transition to Independent, Assisted, Memory Assisted, or Long-Term Care with a trusted expert. Contact Bridge to Better Living today.