Becoming a Family Caregiver: The Hidden Costs

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According to statistics, more than 40 million adults living in the United States provide care for a senior loved one. The amount of time spent caring for an older parent often exceeds 40 hours each week. Before taking on the task of becoming a family caregiver, individuals must make themselves aware of the following hidden costs of caregiving.

Reduced Income

Caring for older adults often leaves very little time for caregivers to look for employment opportunities. Having to sacrifice working at a regular job or at an established career may put a huge damper on personal income. Individuals must weigh the affordability of the venture before leaving the workforce.

Families who find it difficult to care for their aging loved ones without assistance can benefit greatly from professional respite care. Coral Gables, Florida, family caregivers who need a break from their caregiving duties can turn to Home Care Assistance. Using our proprietary Balanced Care Method, our respite caregivers can encourage your loved one to eat well, exercise regularly, get plenty of mental and social stimulation, and focus on other lifestyle factors that promote longevity.

Low Employment Options

Sometimes, caregiving situations are temporary when the older adult has a terminal illness. In these instances, caregivers may eventually desire to join the workforce. However, being unemployed for an extended time puts them at risk of being unemployable. Despite having some skills and knowledge pertaining to caregiving, rejoining the workforce may require further education and certification. Although many programs are available for upgrading knowledge and experience, a former caregiver may not be able to afford the costs.

Future Costs

Many family caregivers are unpaid, which leaves them little room for building substantial savings or retirement accounts. In many cases, individuals resort to using current accounts to subsidize their living costs, which further threatens retirement options. By not being employed outside of the caregiving situation, social security benefits are also reduced.

Hiring a professional caregiver is a good way to provide high-quality care to your aging parent without giving up your career. Although it may be challenging to find reliable, highly rated home care, Coral Gables, Florida, families can turn to Home Care Assistance. Our respite and live-in caregivers are expertly trained to assist seniors with a wide array of important tasks, including cooking, bathing, light housekeeping, and exercise.

Personal Healthcare Costs

Caregiving can be a stressful job. If caregivers don’t focus on their health, they may face unexpected healthcare costs. When caregivers don’t adhere to healthy diets, get sufficient sleep, and exercise routinely, they increase the risk of fatigue and illness. Burnout is a common concern among family caregivers. If not covered by a spouse’s health insurance, any personal medical expenses come out of the individual’s pocket, which further depletes income.

Household Costs

If a family decides to bring an older parent into their home, they must realize there are going to be increased household expenses unless they get assistance from other family members or government programs. Fuel expenses rise when taking a loved one to appointments. Utility bills are another consideration. If the senior has limited finances, the family may need to pay for medications or other medical expenses from time to time.

If you’re the primary family caregiver for a senior loved one living in Coral Gables, live-in care is available if your loved one’s health has become too difficult to manage without professional expertise. At Home Care Assistance, we take measures to help seniors prevent illness and injury by assisting with exercise and mobility, preparing nutritious meals, helping with bathing and other personal hygiene tasks, and much more. To create a customized in-home care plan for your elderly parent, give us a call at 1 (305) 964-5636 today.