Caregiving Affects Work and Finances

Although caregiving has a big impact on work and life, most caregivers are also feeling financially burdened.  Almost one-quarter of households in the United States contain a caregiver, and most of those households provide care for someone who is age 50 or older.

Most caregivers are financially burdened by their caregiving duties.  Caregivers with more caregiving responsibilities and those who did not feel they had a choice in becoming a caregiver reported greater financial hardship.

While caregiving creates a financial burden, caregiving has a big impact on work and life.  Caregivers provide care an average of 21 hours per week.  A majority of caregivers say they are working, either full or part-time, or have worked at some point while caregiving.  More than 60 percent of working caregivers have made adjustments to their work schedule, such as leaving early, arriving late, or taking time off.  With the current financial situation, can you afford to loose your job because you are worried about your loved one?  Not surprisingly, the jobs of caregivers with the most caregiving responsibilities are the most affected; one-third of caregivers who had to provide constant care had quit their job to perform their caregiving duties and 12 percent had retired.

Caregivers also report they have less time for family or friends, have given up vacations or hobbies, and have less time to exercise.  Caregivers said they need more help finding time for themselves, balancing work and family responsibilities, and managing stress.

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