Are You A Caregiver? How Do You Know?

In North America it is estimated that the over 65 population will double to 70 million by 2030. In the US alone, the home care provided by family members or other unpaid members of the general public (friends, neighbours) in 2007 was already worth an estimated 370 billion dollars.

So, who is a caregiver?  Are you a caregiver?

According to the American Family Caregiver Alliance you are a caregiver if you provide these services:

  • Buy groceries, cooks, cleans house or does laundry for someone who needs special help doing these things? (This sounds like what I did for every husband I ever had).

  • Help a family member get dressed, take a shower and take medicine?

  • Help with transferring someone in and out of bed, helps with physical therapy, injections, feeding tubes or other medical procedures?

  • Make medical appointments and drives to the doctor and drugstore?

  • Talks with the doctors, care managers and others to understand what needs to be done?

  • Spend time at work handling a care-giving (patient) crisis or making plans to help a family member who is sick?

  • Is the designated “on-call” family member for problems?

Sadly, you are not unique if while performing these types of services, you juggle work and family.  Some of you may find yourselves in the “sandwich” generation, that is, taking care of parents and children at the same time.

All of these factors can be further exacerbated by the type of illness the patient suffers, by availability of facilities and professionals, by cultural approaches and also by livng a long distance away from the person who requires your care.

Want to read more about caregiving?  To find some examples of complaints and kudos and good tips about caregiving and possible resources?  Then go to:

https://www.caregiver.org/caregiving

I hope this helps!

Yours truly,

Margaret Jean.

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