NationalAcademies.org reports that 17.7 million people in the United States serve as a family caregiver for someone aged 65 or older who has a significant impairment. Family caregivers are anyone who provide assistance and support to an individual who may have a physical or mental disability or to aging seniors. This can include relatives, friends, or neighbors. While society often considers and assesses the affects that America’s rapidly aging population will have on society, those who feel the affects most are actually the ones caring for their aging family members and loved ones.
Family caregivers often take on the majority of the burdens associated with care of an aging adult. They are doing so by carrying most costs at their own expense and with little, if any, medical training or background. While it is simply human nature for members of one’s family to want to care for each other, it is often a bigger responsibility than the average person can take on – especially while balancing their own lives as well. This is why family caregivers often experience burnout and can even be subjecting themselves to negative health effects. For example, a family member who spends many hours caring for an older relative with dementia can then be at an advance risk of the disease.
So how do you combat the negative impacts of family caregiving while ensuring a loved one is getting the assistance and care they need? The solution is the Family Centered Care Approach. This tactic shifts the focus from being centered on the person (senior) to the family (senior and his/her loved one who is acting as a caregiver). When all parties involved needs are considered, better outcomes are achieved.
Professional caregivers can bridge the gap and adopt this approach by:
- Acknowledging and accepting family caregivers as respected and reputable aspects of the elderly person’s care team
- Analyze caregivers’ abilities and willingness to take on the task’s needed in a senior’s care plan
- Openly communicate and distribute pertinent information to family caregivers
- Recognize the importance of the family caregivers’ role in the process and use them as a resource
For more information on caregivers and how they can work in tandem with and as a solution for your family, please call 916-933-9777 or visit our website. Our professional staff consists of highly skilled individuals who are in the top 5% of the market. We only hire people that we would personally trust to care for our own parents. We are more than happy to serve those in need of caregiving assistance in Sacramento, El Dorado, Placer, and Yolo counties. For daily tips, advice, and news, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google Plus.