Informal caregivers are spouses, adult children, and other family members who provide unpaid care to a family member. It's estimated that more than 34 million people are caring for an older adult in their family or close circle of friends. Of those family carers, 15.7 million of them deal specifically with someone diagnosed with dementia.
Before you agree to be the main caregiver to your parents, you should stop and consider the expectations vs. realities. Sometimes, people mean well and find that daily care routines are more stressful than imagined. They become stressed and overwhelmed without having thought everything through and making sure there's the right balance of self-care and caregiving duties.
Your Parents Save Money
One of the most common reasons family caregivers give for being a carer to their parents is the money that's saved. You do save money. You may also find yourself spending money from your own pocket.
You're helping out and see the things your parents aren't able to afford. The cost of medications has them choosing between groceries or medications. You don't enjoy that situation, so you take over paying for groceries now and then.
While this is a kind act, it can impact your finances. The AARP estimates that family caregivers spend almost $7,000 per year helping with expenses. Make sure you're looking at the financial impact of caregiving. If you're quitting a job to provide care, you need to have a plan in place to lessen the economic impact. Talk to your family about splitting caregiver duties to make sure you're still able to work.
You'll Bond With Your Mom and Dad
When you're helping your parents out on a daily or weekly basis, you will form a tighter bond. Your mom and dad may have bad days where they don't seem to appreciate you, but there are the days where they stop and tell you how much they appreciate the help. Those days make you free amazing and appreciated.
You'll Learn New Skills
Some family caregivers go on and take jobs in the caregiving field. After years of caring for your parents, you have first-hand experience providing care. If you quit a job to care for aging parents, you have a new job field to consider. When you're ready to go back to work, you already have experience in care to get you started. Plus, jobs are plentiful in that field.
Professional caregivers are flexible. You don't have to hire them all five days for the full eight hours. Use these caregivers to help fit in gaps where you need to work and other family members aren't available. Your parents have the help they need, and you're not overstretching yourself.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering Caregiver Services in Long Beach CA, talk to the caring staff at Cambrian Home Care today. (562) 498-1800 / (877) 390-4300.