Caregiving in the U.S. 2014
People who care for adult family members or friends fulfill an important role not only for the people they assist, but for society as a whole. While this care is unpaid, its value has been estimated at 257 billion dollars annually.1 Although caregivers make many contributions, being a caregiver may take a personal toll.
We find the demand on caregiversí time can range from a few hours a week to 40 or more hours per week – essentially constant care. Caregivers also provide a range of activities. These activities can be relatively undemanding, such as driving the person you care for to an appointment. Or the activities can be highly demanding, such as bathing, dressing, and feeding the care recipient. Therefore, it is not surprising that some caregivers report experiencing little physical strain, emotional stress, or financial hardship as a result of providing care, while others report a far different experience.