November is National Caregiver Month. You won’t have to look far to find a caregiver near you. For many people it involves a look in the mirror.
An estimated 34.2 million people care for a loved one age aged 50 or older in the United States. The average age of a caregiver is 49 and 60% of caregivers are female. They spend an average of 24 hours per week caring for the needs of their loved one, according to the National Alliance for Caregiving and AARP Public Policy Institute.
How can we serve this growing population?
Caregivers are notorious for their generosity and selflessness, tending to forgo taking care of themselves because another’s need is greater. The question is who is going to remind them? Only one third of caregivers report that a health care provider has asked them what they need to care for their loved one. Half as many report that a health care provider has asked what they need to take care of themselves.
At the same time, the National Alliance for Caregiving and AARP Public Policy Institute report more than eight out of 10 caregivers say they could use more information or help on caregiving topics. This is where organizations like the Caregiver Assistance Network provides assistance. We provide support groups and resource information to family caregivers.
How can you help?
Send caregivers our way! Chances are you or someone you know is caring for an aging parent, or ailing spouse, sibling, neighbor or friend. Ask them what they need to take better care of themselves. Give them our phone number or offer to go with them to a support group meeting. This November, show a caregiver that you care about them. Learn more here or call (513) 869-4483 for more information.