The decision to act as a caregiver for an elderly loved one brings tremendous satisfaction, as well as responsibility. Acting as a caregiver causes you to consider things you may never not have dealt with before. Here are among the top concerns for persons serving as caregivers to an elderly family member.

1. Finances

A primary concern of caregivers is the financial impact of their new position. Acting as a caregiver can be very expensive. From the lost wages that can no longer be earned because of the inability to work to the extra expenses incurred for the care of your loved one, one needs to consider how the financial fallout from the role as caregiver will be addressed.

2. Time and its shortage

While acting as a caregiver is noble, one must realize that there will be very little free time as the elderly loved one's condition deteriorates. Although there may not much strain on time at first, as your senior family member begins to need more care, the pool of available time will shrink by the day. It is crucial to begin to learn good time-management skills to enable coping as this situation progresses.

3. More responsibility

Caregivers are literally responsible for the health and well-being of another adult. Although you may have handled parenting with ease, this new type of responsibility is different. One should begin preparing for the added strain this will cause and assure that a good support network is in place so you have somewhere to turn when necessary.

4. Career impact

Many persons who leave work or cut back to part-time to provide care for an elderly loved one find that their careers never fully recover. Whether it is being passed over for a promotion, missing out on career-furthering projects, or being viewed as one who is not a team player, one may very well find that their careers are never the same. It is not uncommon for caregivers to discover that they are not able to re-enter the work force or not in the same profession or at the same level.

5. Health problems for the caregiver

Although caregivers may concern themselves with their elderly loved one's health, studies show that long-term caregivers suffer in their own health. This is true even after the elderly loved one has passed on. Presumably, this is due to the higher stress that a caregiver experiences. Statistics show that caregivers are more likely to suffer significant health problems and therefore should carefully evaluate their situation to see if they are really able to pay this price.

6. Decreased opportunities to socialize

Caregivers may find that they have fewer opportunities to get out and mingle with friends and colleagues. The demands of caregiving can be extreme and if they are unable to find someone to provide a break, caregivers may find themselves unable to leave the elderly loved one for more than minutes at a time.

7. Marital strain

The stress from a caregiving position can take its toll on a marriage, especially if the marriage was already experiencing difficulties. Even if you do not experience elevated stress--and virtually every caregiver does--it is common to have significantly less time to spend with one's spouse. This can have lasting consequences on a marriage.

8. Obtaining legal authorization to act on behalf of your loved one

As an elderly loved one ages, he or she will eventually lose the capacity to make decisions for himself or herself. Before this occurs, one should consult a lawyer on the steps that must be taken to legally act on behalf of your elderly family member. Ask about obtaining a power of attorney, a healthcare power of attorney, and other documents that allow you to make decisions concerning your elderly loved one's finances, disposition of property and medical care and other situations.

Being Prepared

One may wonder what you should do. The best thing is to address these concerns now before they become present issues. Talk to the family, your friends, and your attorney. Do what you can do now to establish the support network before it is needed. By doing so you will help yourself and the elderly loved one for whom you provide care.

Sources:

Wittenberg-Lyles, Elaine, et al. "Reciprocal suffering: caregiver concerns during hospice care." Journal of pain and symptom management 41.2 (2011): 383-393.

Dunkin, Jennifer J., and Cay Anderson-Hanley. "Dementia caregiver burden. A review of the literature and guidelines for assessment and intervention." Neurology 51.1 Suppl 1 (1998): S53-S60.

Related Articles

8 Tips For Managing Caregiver Stress 8 Tips For Managing Caregiver Stress
Laughter on Call’s ‘Comedy Care’ Is Creating Much Needed Connections Laughter on Call’s ‘Comedy Care’ Is Creating Much Needed Connections
The 10 Absolute Best Things About Growing Older The 10 Absolute Best Things About Growing Older
7 Incredible Women Over 50 Who Will Inspire You To Take That Risk 7 Incredible Women Over 50 Who Will Inspire You To Take That Risk
Facebook Support Groups For Caregivers Facebook Support Groups For Caregivers
Senior Care Terms Explained Senior Care Terms Explained
Activities for The Elderly With Memory Loss Activities for The Elderly With Memory Loss
Monitoring the Elderly at Home Monitoring the Elderly at Home
Signs of Dehydration in the Elderly Signs of Dehydration in the Elderly
What Does the Term “Aging in Place’ Mean? What Does the Term “Aging in Place’ Mean?
What Are In-Home Caregiver Duties? What Are In-Home Caregiver Duties?
Managing Caregiver Boredom Managing Caregiver Boredom

Trending Topics

The Best Wheelchairs With Brakes Of 2020 (Review) The Best Wheelchairs With Brakes Of 2020 (Review)
Causes, Risks, and Solutions for Seniors Falling Out of Bed Causes, Risks, and Solutions for Seniors Falling Out of Bed
Options for Senior Beds Options for Senior Beds
How Memory Care Facilities Deal with Aggression How Memory Care Facilities Deal with Aggression
The Legal Rights and Responsibilities of a Caregiver The Legal Rights and Responsibilities of a Caregiver

Recent Articles

The Best Blood Pressure Cuffs Review 2020 The Best Blood Pressure Cuffs Review 2020
14 Virtual Experiences For Seniors To Have At Home 14 Virtual Experiences For Seniors To Have At Home
How To Detect Fake News And Fact-Check Information Online How To Detect Fake News And Fact-Check Information Online
New Scams That Seniors Need to Be Aware Of New Scams That Seniors Need to Be Aware Of
13 At-Home Activities For Seniors Besides Watching TV 13 At-Home Activities For Seniors Besides Watching TV

The material of this web site is provided for informational purposes only. SeniorsMatters.com does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment;or legal, financial or any other professional services advice. Use of this site is subject to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.