Easter Seals New Jersey recognizes the various struggles that many caregivers sometimes face when they are caring for a loved one. Often times, these same individuals neglect to care for themselves. For all of you that do not know, November is National Family Caregivers Month, and to honor all of you caregivers out there who work hard all day, every day, to care for your loved ones, this post is for you.
In the most recent studies on Caregivers in the US there was an estimated:
- More than 65 million caregivers nationwide
- 52 million caregivers caring for adults with an illness or disability
- Caregivers spend on average 20-35 hours per week providing care
- 17% feel their personal health suffers due to caregiving
- 40%-70% of caregivers show significant signs of depression
- Only 12% of caregivers report using respite services
- 78% report needing more help and information about caregiving
- 35% of caregivers report having difficulty finding time for themselves,
- 29% report trouble balancing work and family responsibilities
As most of you know, being a caregiver can be extremely stressful, not giving yourself enough time in the day to worry about your own needs because you are always concerned about someone else’s. When you do focus on your needs, it may feel selfish and unnatural. It is important to understand that an essential part of being a caregiver is to make sure you put yourself first at times. While you may think it will compromise the care of your loved one, you have to understand that it will not. Both your life, and the life of your loved one, depends on your well-being.
With that being said, here are 6 helpful tips on how to manage caregiver stress and the busy lifestyle that comes with it.