Family caregivers make up the majority of long-term care providers in the United States. Every year more than 65 million Americans make the choice to provide nursing and periodic or continual care for their aging or disabled loved ones. That number is growing as advances in medicine are allowing us to live longer. November is National Family Caregiver’s Month, a time to recognize the amazing efforts of these wonderfully caring people, but also a time to make sure that they, in turn, have the support they need to continue.
One of the greatest things we can do is encourage family caregivers to make themselves a priority. Caregiving can be a rewarding experience, but it is also physically and emotionally demanding, and the natural tendency of most caregivers is to put their own needs last.