- Nearly 23 million households are currently home to a family/informal caregiver. They cross all ethnic, economic, and religious lines1
- Some 43 percent of these caregivers are over 50 themselves–13 percent are over 651
What it Means to be a Caregiver
Who are caregivers? What do caregivers do? There are many definitions of a caregiver. What’s the difference between formal and informal caregiving? Are you a caregiver? Caregiving has many satisfying rewards.
Caregivers: Who are they?
There are many ways to define “caregiver”. One might define a caregiver as a person who cares for someone who is sick or disabled or an adult who cares for a child. Overall, a caregiver is anyone who routinely helps others.
- Caregivers in the formal sense are usually connected to a social service or health care system and can either be volunteers or paid domestic workers.
- Caregivers in the informal sense can be friends or family members who are caring for the needs of another adult or a child.
Caregivers: What do they do?
Caregivers provide more than just care. Caregivers provide emotional, personal care, scheduling appointments, transportation, social, homemaking, errands, and other services on a daily or intermittent basis. Caregivers spend good chunks of their weeks on a gamut of chores, from medication management and bathing to feeding, clothing, and arranging health care services. Some caregivers are part of a team of health care support and may work alongside doctors, nurses, therapists, and even dietitians.
Caregivers wear many hats and can play multiple roles. Caregivers become companions or friends to their care recipients. They often are good listeners, especially for the lonely. Caregivers provide the eyes and ears for family members who live far away or who must leave the care recipient for extended periods of time. Caregivers can also be great cheerleaders who encourage and influence healthy, positive living. They also provide mental stimulation and a strong sense of security.
Although caregiving can be emotionally and physically draining at times, caring for someone can also be deeply satisfying. Caregiving is a chance to make a big difference in the community. Many long‑term relationships have been fostered between care recipients and caregivers. Caregiving can improve relationships with family members and neighbors. In addition, many caregivers report personal and spiritual growth through the act of caregiving.
A Better Living Home Care encourages you to learn more about caregivers and caregiving.
If you are in need of an in home caregiver for live in care or hourly care, contact us and we will provide a caregiver that is qualified, compatible, compassionate and caring.
If you are interested in joining our family of caregivers, visit our career opportunities page. If you are in need of an in home caregiver for live‑in care or hourly care, contact us and we will match your needs with a compatible and compassionate caregiver.
- The National Alliance for Caregiving and the 2004 national survey by AARP.