The Reef for Male Caregivers – The Alzheimer’s Caregiver Biggest Health Risk
Hello and welcome. No one said caring for an aging loved one would be easy, but you may not realize how much of a toll it can take on your mood and health. In a survey conducted by Caring.com, 25% of caregivers reported instances of depression. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, nearly 50% of Alzheimer’s caregivers have felt depressed at some point. In fact, research shows that people who provide care for a person with dementia are twice as likely to suffer from depression as a person caring for someone without dementia.
It’s not hard to see why someone caring for a person with Alzheimer’s disease is at an increased risk for depression. Four out of five Alzheimer’s caregivers report that they frequently experience high levels of stress and often don’t get enough sleep at night. Adding to that, caregivers also have to struggle with seeing a loved one slip farther and farther into their disease.
Know the Signs of Caregiver Depression
Alzheimer’s and dementia caregivers should be on the lookout for symptoms of depression as part of their self-care. If you have at least four of the following symptoms over a two-week period, you should see a doctor:
- Feelings of guilt or worthlessness
- Loss of coordination
- Irritation and agitation
- Inability to sleep well
- Loss of interest in usually pleasurable activities
- A decrease or increase in appetite or weight
- Suicidal thoughts or actions
If you are concerned that you might be depressed or close to slipping into depression, see a doctor immediately. Depression is a real condition. Luckily, it can be treated. Don’t turn away from help that is available. Talk to your doctor, family members and close friends – they can help you construct a plan of positive action that will help to keep you healthy.
For more information or to contact us here at the Alzheimer’s Care Resource Center
Please call (877) 760-9199 or email us below. Thanks for joining us today and we’ll see you again next month.