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30% of caregivers will die before those they are caring for!
Lesley Jean
Posted: Sunday, January 4, 2015 10:36 PM
Joined: 2/13/2013
Posts: 2965

This article is from aging I found it very relevant for all of us, especially this going through a difficult time with caring for their lo.   We need to take time for ourselves.  I have been putting off my mammogram but will an appt this week.  


Thirty Percent of Caregivers Die

Rough statistics show that 30% of caregivers die before those they are caring for. Some studies show deaths higher. Illness that doesn't lead to death is rampant, as well - depression and auto-immune diseases are high on the list. Caregivers often don't find time to go to their own doctor appointments. They put them off, because they are too busy, or are just plain sick of sitting in clinics with their loved ones. Then things like breast cancer, which could be caught at an early stage, aren't found until the illness is much worse or even life threatening.

Caregivers are as important as the people they care for. If they abuse their bodies, minds and spirits while caring for others, no one wins. Support for caregivers means we must tell our stories and know we are heard. I hope we'll hear many stories on this site.

Posted: Monday, January 5, 2015 6:49 AM
Joined: 1/12/2012
Posts: 1432

Teepa Snow (  sorry, here I go again)  also comments a lot on the health of caregivers.  She reports that caregivers are 50% more likely to suffer health problems.  


partly because of the huge amounts of cortisol ( stress hormone) in our systems-  which can lead to all kinds of medical issues. 


It's all well and good to SAY that caregivers need help, need a break,  take time for yourself, etc-  but who among us actually gets the help and rest they desperately need?  It's impossible for most caregivers-  physically, emotionally, financially.


Teepa does have good information on deep breathing exercises and statistics that show decreased levels of cortisol with routine participation.  


of course, that doesn't solve any of the actual problems, but if it helps keep us from getting sick, too,  it's worth doing. 


those of you still caring for your LO have my utmost admiration- you are all heroes!  I continue to lift up prayers every day for each of you- God bless



Posted: Monday, January 5, 2015 7:50 AM
Joined: 1/23/2012
Posts: 2270

I've heard this message before about caregivers and have seen it happen to some friends. It is a chilling message. There is so much resting on our shoulders yet we need to find some way to insulate and care for ourselves as well.


Thank you for posting, LJ.

Posted: Monday, January 5, 2015 8:33 AM
Joined: 7/31/2014
Posts: 1369

That report doesn't suprise me.  I often wonder how all the stress and freaking out and crying will effect me in the long run.

I've always been real healthy, but of course have never had to deal with this kind of situation.

I'm 20 years younger than my husband so I will probably outlive him, but at what cost.

Posted: Monday, January 5, 2015 9:11 AM
Joined: 12/17/2014
Posts: 1166

Colleen, the deep breathing you mention sounds like a do-able practice. I'm going to try to do it everyday when I think of it. I think it also helps with feeling better in general because after singing in the choir at church I always feel much better. The fellowship and music are of course, big factors, too. But I've read elsewhere how helpful breathing meditation can be.
Posted: Monday, January 5, 2015 9:19 AM
Joined: 12/31/2013
Posts: 1347

I was watching Teepa yesterday about the deep bbreathing exercise. 

I find myself hyperventilating a lot of the time.

I will not let Alzheimer's take me down too , if I can help it.



Posted: Monday, January 5, 2015 9:34 AM
Joined: 12/26/2013
Posts: 524

Y O G A      try it for health, breathing, stretching...

I gotta follow my own advice!

Posted: Tuesday, January 6, 2015 3:52 AM
Joined: 6/5/2014
Posts: 1582

I'm aware of the statistics and worry about this daily. There is nobody else to step in, and the nursing homes all have waiting lists, so I try not to think about what would happen if I were in an accident, or had a sudden medical condition.


I wonder how many of you have a backup plan for this?