The month of November is a time to recognize, support, and empower family caregivers.
This November, we remember the people who lovingly give baths, clean houses, shop for, and comfort the millions of elderly and ill people who are friends and loved ones.
Celebrate the contributions of caregivers.
There are over 53 million Americans who are unpaid caregivers to family, friends, and neighbors. Caregiving can often have a significant impact on the life of the caregiver in more ways than one. It can make maintaining your physical and mental health more difficult and may put a strain on work and social life.
Feelings of stress, worry, and isolation may have become familiar to all of us. Despite the current situation, caregiving-as-usual happens. The stress and challenges of the role can have a huge impact on a family caregiver’s mental health, leading to more family caregivers experiencing depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, alcohol and drug addiction, and anxiety.
It’s important for caregivers to take care of their own mental health. Supporting caregivers with information and resources can help them maintain their mental health and better serve loved ones with mental illness.
Why National Caregiver’s Month is Important
Family members, friends, and neighbors devote countless hours to providing care to their relatives or loved ones. During National Family Caregivers Month, we recognize and thank the humble heroes who do so much to keep our families and communities strong.”
President Barack Obama, NFC Month Proclamation 2012
Caregivers need love, too
Caregiving while still holding down an outside job is exhausting. Much of caregiving is unpaid. National Family Caregivers Month in November provides resources for self-care, advocacy, and de-stressing for our caregivers. The month is dedicated to supporting caregivers as they care for others.
Learn how to cope
National Family Caregivers Month features lots of vital information to help caregivers cope with a tough, and sometimes thankless job. There are tips for caregivers such as taking care of your own health, accepting offers of help from others, learning the skills to speak effectively with doctors, and being open to new, assistive technologies that can lighten your load.
Check yourself for depression
Watching a parent age or seeing someone change drastically due to illness can be devastating. Take some time to monitor your own wellbeing. If you are not sleeping well, exercising, or feel yourself becoming reclusive, speak to a professional about depression. It can hit anyone at any time. There’s no shame in feeling overwhelmed.