Owing to advances in medical science we as a nation are expected to live longer. Although we can expect to live longer, this brings with it the greater potential for more and more of us to need care in our later life. Many of us can expect to provide informal care to an elderly parent, friend or elderly relative when we would have expected to start having more time for ourselves between the ages of 45-60 years old.
Initially this care may just take the form of helping with tasks such as shopping, cleaning and washing to help our loved ones adjust to the later stages of their lives. As they advance in years their dependency on you is likely to increase considerably. Many people responsible for providing care are still of working age and may even still have dependent children to take care of. Trying to provide a balance I their own lives and providing the level of care required to a loved one can often be extremely stressful.
For the sake of your own health it is vitally important that you know where you can go to ask for help. Nobody can be expect to provide care to a loved one day in day out without being able to take a break otherwise your own health can suffer. Organisations such as Carers UK can provide vital information on where you can ask for help. It can also put you in touch with others who have been placed in the same position who may be able to provide tips on how to survive being a full time carer. This fantastic service is funded by the National Lottery Fund.
Because Carers UK encourage you to share experiences with others this provides valuable support and a sense that you are no longer isolated as there are others out there going through similar experiences.