Negative Effects Of Family Caregiving

Superior Essays
Assuming the responsibility of caring for loved one may seem to be a rewarding experience, however, the task of caring for an aging family member presents a multitude of negative effects. Family caregivers may include a spouse, adult child, or sibling, but the average family caregiver in America today is a 48-year-old woman who still has one child at home and holds a paying job (Sheely, 90). While most caregivers assume the responsibility of looking after an elderly family member in an effort to provide cost-efficient and reliable care, there may be significant difficulties. Drawbacks may include psychological deficiencies from an increased risk of depression and anxiety. One may also suffer with complication of their own physical health as …show more content…
Typically, physical effects stem in large part from demanding mental aspects of caring. It is expressed that mental health first starts to deplete causing a decline in physical health, such as sleep deprivation and immune system deficiencies (Sheely, 90). The needs of a caretaker are often compromised as they commit to taking care of their suffering loved one. Caregivers are more likely to report higher rates of chronic conditions like heart disease, diabetes, and arthritis. In addition, elderly spousal caregivers who experience caregiving related stress have a 63 % higher mortality rate than non-caregivers of the same age (“Caregiver Health”). Caregivers often suffer from extreme fits of exhaustion due to the extensive amount of care their family member needs (“Caregiver Health”). Because it is typical for women to be the primary caregiver, lifting an elderly individual can be problematic and dangerous, thus leaving caregivers prone to injury. Not only is personal injury a high risk for caregivers, but also there is a marked lack of self-care. Caregivers are less likely to engage in preventative health behaviors in that nearly three-fourths have reported that they do not visit the doctor as often as they should (“Caregiver Health”). These individuals lack time and energy to prepare proper meals, exercise, and lack a beneficial sleep schedule, all of which can lead to health decline. Caregiving can be physically demanding and contribute to major health problems for those who are providing support for their ailing loved

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