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What Is Life Like for a 24/7 Caregiver?
From:
Pamela D. Wilson -- Caregiving Expert, Advocate & Speaker Pamela D. Wilson -- Caregiving Expert, Advocate & Speaker
Golden , CO
Friday, May 10, 2019


24 Hour Caregiver
 
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CONTACT: Pamela D. Wilson 888-393-7754

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Golden, Colorado – May 10, 2019

What Is Life Like for a 24/7 Caregiver?

Caring for aging parents or caring for a spouse on a 24/7 basis is highly stressful. Until one is in this situation is it difficult to imagine what life is like for a 24/7 caregiver.

Here are some 24/7 caregiving scenarios to gain an understanding of caregivers who devote their lives to caring for an aging parent or a spouse. 

  • If you have children, think back to when the baby was first born. Remember the sleepless nights, the crying, changing diapers, and having very little time for yourself. Caring for an aging parent or spouse becomes similar when physical declines occur and care needs increase.
  • Managing incontinence can feel like a full-time job. Changing depends, helping with bathing, washing clothes and changing bedding—sometimes several times a day becomes the norm.
  • Isolation, loneliness, and depression are common. The caregiver can rarely leave the home unless a family member or a paid caregiver comes to sit with the loved one who needs care.
  • If the person needing care has a diagnosis of Alzheimer's or dementia, the stress is even greater.  The patience of Job is needed to respond appropriately to repetitive behaviors, pacing, and in the most difficult situations physical threats to safety.
  • Bathing becomes an event. For persons who are physically weak or who have dementia, the act of bathing takes planning. Many loved ones with dementia refuse to bathe for days, weeks, or months.
  • Family members disappear when help is needed. Friends do the same. There is a discomfort having to see a family member or friend in declining health. When dementia is the diagnosis many family members ask the question, "why visit if they don't remember who I am?"
  • A lack of planning exists for what happens when one spouse passes away. Who will then care for the surviving spouse who is likely to have experienced physical and emotional declines? Because we don't talk about caregiving the unexpected surprises just keep coming.
  • 24/7 caregivers need support but don't know where to turn. Leaving home to attend an in-person support group can turn into a 5-hour event with having to find someone to care for a loved one and driving back and forth to the support group.

Research confirms that caregiving takes a toll on the caregiver for years after caregiving ends. Caregivers who wish to make caregiving easier are open to participation in online caregiving support groups and courses. The support offered helps caregivers gain confidence in their abilities and reduces the loneliness and isolation that results when one becomes a 24/7 caregiver.

Pamela D. Wilson, MS, BS/BA, NCG, CSA is a national caregiving expert with more than 20+ years of experience. Her mission is to support caregivers and aging adults in navigating all of the changes that result from needing care and becoming a caregiver. Caregiving is a family issue that is rarely discussed until the need. Online support groups and courses for caregivers and aging adults are available on her website.

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Pamela D. Wilson, MS, BS/BA, NCG, CSA, a National Certified Guardian and Certified Senior Advisor, is a caregiving thought leader, elder care expert, advocate, and speaker. Pamela offers family caregivers programming and support to navigate the challenges of providing, navigating, and planning for care. She guides professionals practicing in estate planning, elder and probate law, and financial planning to create plans to address unexpected concerns identified in her past role as a professional fiduciary. Healthcare professionals are supported by Pamela’s expertise to increase responsiveness and sensitivity to the extensive range of care challenges faced by care recipients and caregivers. Contact Pamela HERE

 
Wilson
President/Owner
Pamela D. Wilson, Inc.
Golden, CO
303-810-1816