Caregiver profile

This page presents a quick view of a caregiver’s world as we understand it.

CAREGIVER

To → Parent / Child / Sibling / Friend / Peer / Spouse / Partner

who requires assistance to varying degrees with daily life routines, healthcare and occupations

Due to diverse circumstances such as → Aging / chronic or terminal illness / physical, intellectual or psychosocial disability / special needs or developmental challenges

The effect on the person requiring care → LIFECHANGING
The effect on the Caregiver → LIFECHANGING

  • Requiring a complete re-organising of personal, social, emotional and professional life
  • Setting aside many goals, often even setting aside simple wants such as taking a break to go shopping or watch a movie, or have friends over, or take time out to read a book
  • As time passes, support decreases from family and friends
  • Social, psychosocial, physical, financial and emotional stress increases
  • Isolation builds
  • Environmental support is often hard to access as resources, information and infrastructure to help caregivers care for their dependants are random discoveries and may not always be useful or even functional.

Most caregivers will find this profile familiar whatever be the circumstances requiring them to care for the person dependant on them.

We define an informal caregiver as one who helps look after another person who could be a family member or friend dealing with a health / ability issue, either of which may be due to any number of factors, physical, intellectual,  psychosocial or developmental that hinders that person from leading their lives independently.

We could find no studies in India that profiled caregivers as a community, despite the fact that almost everyone is aware of atleast one among family, friend and aquaintance who is a caregiver.

Another issue that people face (while taking care of dementia patients or others)
arises due to the fact that families are scattered.
Only one member of the family takes up the responsibility.
Even if people take turns, only one member
has to take the burden at a stretch (e.g., six months).
Also, due to other reasons (bed ridden patients, long travel, and people staying abroad),
eventually only one family member
becomes the caregiver in the final stages
and others are just ‘visitors’
. ”
(Rajesh Naik, supporting caregiver)

There are some studies that have focussed on specific populations though and we have given links to the studies we have come across, or information about them, here.

Caregiver-blogger Swapna Kishore has a post on her blogsite with her thoughts and some homework on the gender profile of caregivers and here’s where you can read her take on this aspect.

1 comment

  1. admin says:

    Yes, that’s a good idea. Will get that going in a bit.

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