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Resources for Caregivers

Resources for Caregivers 11/18/22A caregiver is someone who helps another with things he or she cannot do for themselves.  In addition to parents and day care providers who are caregivers for children of all ages, over 62,000 individuals in North Dakota are caregivers for adults. 

A person becomes a caregiver for their spouse, relative, friend, or neighbor for many reasons.  Quite often, it is due to a serious medical condition or the aging process in general.  Caregiving can include tasks such as providing transportation, housekeeping, grocery shopping, or bill paying, handling personal care, managing legal or insurance matters or providing a place to live. 

Care giving can be a rewarding experience, and it can also be filled with enormous challenges.  Time commitment, competing demands, financial implications, and physical and mental stress are some of the most common challenges.

Left unchecked, the challenges can become overwhelming for the caregiver.  They can experience depression, withdrawal, insomnia, trouble concentrating, anger, health issues, exhaustion, anxiety, drinking, smoking, and altered eating habits. Many caregivers have no idea what to do, how to do it, or where to get help. 

Here is the good news.  Services, supports, and other resources to aid family caregivers are available.  One is the ND Family Caregiver Support Program.  It is a system of support services for unpaid caregivers of older adults to help them continue to provide care in their homes and community through information, assistance, counseling, support groups and training. More information is available at https://www.nd.gov/dhs/info/pubs/docs/aging/fact-sheet-family-caregiver-support-program.pdf

North Dakota Aging & Disability Resource – LINK is another resource.  They can connect older adults and people with disabilities to care options that can help them live as independently as possible and maintain their quality of life.  They are just a click away, at http://carechoice.nd.assistguide.net 

For reliable information on family caregiving issues, check into AARP’s Caregiver Resource Center at http://www.aarp.org/home-family/caregiving. They have checklists, worksheets, tips, tools, articles, blogs, Ask the Experts and more. 

Photo Source: https://pixabay.com/en /hands-skin-holding-hands-elderly-578918/  (downloaded 11/22/16)

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