For Alzheimer’s Caregivers, a Much-Needed Break

Being a caregiver for someone in need is beyond difficult. The following article discusses how seeking out help and respite from a day care center for people with Alzheimer’s can give the much needed break and relief that caregivers need in order to maintain as much balance to their own lives and health as possible. To learn more about how a Geriatric Care Manager can help you and your loved one locate needed care, visit us HERE. Thanks for visiting Advocare.

Day care centers for people with Alzheimer’s disease can give their spouses and other family caregivers a much needed source of stress relief, a new study suggests.

Such centers offer people with dementia a chance to socialize and take part in activities that stimulate their minds. The programs can also give spouses, children and other caregivers a break.

Intuitively, that should ease some of caregivers’ daily stress. But there hasn’t been much research to prove it.

In the new study, published recently in the journal Gerontologist, researchers measured stress levels of 173 family caregivers in four U.S. states who used care centers for their relative with dementia.

Through phone interviews over one week, they found caregivers were less stressed and had fewer bouts of anger on day care days than other days. And when stressors did crop up — such as problems at work — they took less of an emotional toll.

“I think this reinforces the fact that caregivers can’t do this all on their own,” said Carol Steinberg, president of the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America. “People need relief.”

Study author Steven Zarit agreed. “There’s a famous book [on caregiving] called ‘The 36-Hour Day,’ and I think that perfectly describes it,” he said. “Caregivers need help. When they get a break, it’s a way to restore.”

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