Caregiver Stress

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  • Topic: Family, Mayo Clinic, Family Caregiver Alliance
  • Pages : 2 (672 words )
  • Download(s) : 296
  • Published : June 27, 2012
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Caregiver Stress|
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Caregiver Stress

Many Americans will be informal caregivers at some point during their lives. During any given year, there are more than 44 million Americans (21% of the adult population) who provide unpaid care to an elderly or disabled person 18 years or older. Altogether, informal caregivers provide 80 percent of the long-term care in the United States. Sixty-one percent of caregivers are women, and 59% informal caregivers have jobs in addition to caring for another person (Greene, R.C., 2008) . Being a caregiver is a unique experience that can cause a variety of emotions for the families involved. For some caregivers the experience can be a very positive, fulfilling time. For others, the challenges of their role can create obstacles in their daily life that lead to negative feelings about the situation and the person for whom they are providing care. Every caregiver’s role and what lead them to become the caregiver is different. Caregiver strain can occur when either the care recipient or the caregiver struggles with their new role to the point that it interferes with the rest of their lives and, sometimes, their health (MFMER, 2012). Steps can be taken (i.e. utilizing all available services and resources and making the time to take care of yourself) to minimize the strain once it is identified. If the responsibilities of the caregiver are delegated to multiple family members, the role strain can be reduced because the stress is shared. There is a high occurrence of role strain when there is only one caregiver or where there is a great amount of care being provided for long periods of time. What is imperative to remember is that the stress impacts the person receiving care and can harm the relationship that they have with their caregiver. Declining family sizes, increasing childlessness, and rising divorce rates will limit the number of family caregivers (MFMER, 2012). Role strain will become more...
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