November is National Family Caregivers Month. We’re taking this opportunity to celebrate hard-working people committing time, energy, and money into making sure their loved ones get the absolute best in-home care. The healthcare system depends on these vital, unpaid workers. They provide the majority of care to the over 5 million people diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, and allow seniors to remain out of nursing homes for years.
In discussions of in-home caregiving, the focus is most often on the person receiving care. We want to make sure they receive the best caregiving possible, allowing them to live happy and comfortable lives. For family caregivers, the pursuit of that goal often involves countless hours of labor in addition to a day job. Caregiving can provide a deep sense of fulfillment, as well as an opportunity to connect with an aging loved one. However, family caregivers need to remember their own needs. Caregivers deserve relaxation and comfort just as much as the ones in their care do. On top of that, caregivers who also take good care of themselves are more likely to provide better, more meaningful assistance to the senior in their life.
Caregiving Is Rewarding But Challenging
Most people do not decide to become a caregiver. The decision is often thrust upon them when a family member falls ill and requires a higher degree of care. When faced with the possibility of putting a loved one in a nursing home, many family members make the brave commitment to take those responsibilities on instead. The experience of caring for a loved one can be very rewarding. Between 55 and 90 percent of caregivers felt that caring for a loved one increased their faith and personal growth.
However, family caregivers also face a unique struggle. Caregiving is a difficult task that often requires the time commitment of a full-time job. On top of that, looking after an ailing family member leads to a tangle of emotions. Then, the stress of caregiving duties can make it even harder to sort out. It’s rarely as simple as providing care; there’s a whole interpersonal dynamic at play when a family member steps into that role, often leading to feelings of guilt, frustration, and emotional pain that only increase the difficulty of an already challenging job.
The costs are literal, as well as emotional. A recent study showed that family caregivers spend 20 percent of their income on out-of-pocket caregiving costs. To compensate for these expenses, many families cut back on leisure spending that might otherwise help caregivers shore up their mental health.
In-Home Care Provides Innumerable Benefits
The benefits for seniors receiving care at home are wide-reaching. In-home care is generally more cost-effective than nursing homes, saving families money on room and board or expensive hospital stays. Nine out of ten seniors want to remain at home, and the health benefits of doing so are also evident. Studies have shown that seniors recover faster within familiar and comfortable environments..
With so many benefits, it’s no wonder so many families choose to care for a loved one at home. But family caregivers deserve a break, too. With Generations Home Care, family caregivers can get respite care for temporary periods on an as-needed or temporary basis. Or, if the high demands of caregiving no longer fit into your life, daily in-home care can ensure that your loved one receives the care and attention they need.
Being a family caregiver is tough, rewarding work. Taking a little time for yourself will help you get the most out of being a caregiver, along with some well-earned rest. With the holidays coming up, it’s more important than ever to step back, take a breath, and focus on the family part of family caregiving.
About Generations Home Care
Generations Home Care personalized in-home care and support services help those recovering from illness, injury, or surgery, living with a chronic disease, or dealing with the natural process of aging. We help people live a fuller, healthier, and independent life.
Our caregivers are trained in the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommended COVID-19 safety precautions. We offer levels of care ranging from companionship, to respite for the primary family caregiver, to homemaking services, to assistance with activities of daily living, to Alzheimer’s and dementia care. Generations Home Care takes a holistic approach and emphasizes a consistent, client-centered plan of care.
Our Specialty Services Include:
- Rehab or hospital-to-home programs for safe discharge.
- Short-term post-operative care during recovery periods.
- Non-medical life management services for people with chronic conditions.
- Veteran’s connection to care program.
- Live-in services and couples care.
If you’d like to learn more about how we can help you, contact us today at 602-595-HOME (4663) or by filling out the contact form on our website.