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What Are the Benefits of Joining a Caregiver Support Group?

July 5th, 2019

By: Lenora Alabi

Caregivers are under more stress than most people. That’s because taking care of someone else isn’t an easy job. It can leave you feeling frustrated, angry, sad, and overwhelmed. It can help to talk to someone about how you feel. Unfortunately, though, it can be difficult to admit to other family members or even friends that you have negative feelings about being a caregiver. Or, you may feel like a burden when you tell other people about your problems. One way to deal with this is to join a caregiver support group. Not sure a support group is right for you? Here are some of the ways you may benefit by joining one.

Find Out You’re Not Alone

You can feel alone sometimes, like you’re the only person in the world dealing with the kinds of problems involved in being a caregiver. You might also feel a bit isolated from the rest of the world because you spend so much time with your aging relative. Being in the presence of other caregivers can relieve that feeling of aloneness. You’ll see that other people are going through the same thing you are and that they, too, don’t always feel positively about it.

Talk About Condition-Specific Problems

There are support groups for caregivers of people with specific conditions, such as ALS, Alzheimer’s, or Parkinson’s. By joining one of these groups, you can share information with others about the disease and ways to deal with its unique challenges. You may also be able to learn tips from more experienced caregivers.

Keep the Older Adult at Home Longer

The difficulty of caregiving sometimes leads to families making the decision to place an older relative in a nursing home. However, when you’re given the chance to vent your feelings and connect with other caregivers, you may be able to delay nursing home placement. In one study funded by the NIA and the NIH, researchers found that caregivers who received the support they needed were able to keep their loved one’s at home for longer.

See into the Future

Okay, joining a caregiver support group won’t literally let you see what the future holds for you or the older adult you’re caring for. However, it can give you some idea of how the disease they have may progress. The members of a support group are caring for people at all different stages of disease, so you may be able to gain knowledge about the kind of care your family member may need in the future.

Sources
https://dailycaring.com/8-benefits-of-caregiver-support-groups/
https://www.aarp.org/caregiving/life-balance/info-2017/support-groups.html
https://www.nih.gov/news-events/nih-research-matters/studies-show-benefits-caregiver-support-programs

IF YOU OR AN AGING LOVED ONE ARE CONSIDERING HIRING CAREGIVERS IN THE LOOP, IL, PLEASE CONTACT THE CARING STAFF AT BRIGHTSTAR CARE CHICAGO. CALL TODAY: 312.382.8888.