Caregiver Burnout

It’s no surprise that caregivers, especially those sandwiched between the needs of a growing family and that of an aging parent, are under stress.  Combine that with a career and no time for self-care and you have a recipe for burnout.  

According to a survey conducted by Statistics Canada in 2012, more than eight million Canadians , 28 per cent of the population over 15, provide care to a family member or friend.
This represents $25 billion of unpaid care, without which our medical system would struggle.

With a growing older adult population, it is more important than ever to care for the wellbeing of caregivers.  

Caregivers not only feel the impact of their responsibility in their health and wellness but also in their pocketbook.  Many caregivers find they spend added money in the process of giving care, and often have to leave work before retirement to care for a loved one.  This has a significant impact on income, especially saving for their own old age. 

Caregivers are so busy taking care of family needs, they often put off going to the doctor themselves or find they don’t have the energy to care for themselves.  Balancing emotional and physical stress along with family and work responsibilities can prove too much for one person.

Signs of Burnout:

Withdrawing from social interaction

Loss of interest in favorite pastimes 

Thoughts of suicide

Unusual eating patterns

A change in sleeping habits

Lasting colds or illness

If you notice yourself feeling or thinking some of these things, it may be time to talk to a doctor or find some respite care.   For more information and support follow the link to find the Canadian Caregiver Coalition website.