The Tolls of Caregiving

/ February 12, 2013

Given the prevalent role families play in providing long-term care, insurance may not always seem necessary. However, as briefly discussed in my last post on the basics of long-term care insurance, the true value of long-term care insurance involves protecting the wellbeing of loved ones. Even though spouses and adult children are often willing to take on the responsibility, it’s still difficult to make the physical, emotional and financial sacrifices required to provide care for a loved one.

Lady in a Field - iStock

The toll on those caring for family members in poor health can be horrendous. On average, caregivers who suffer extreme stress lose about 10 years of their life. Caregivers also tend to have higher levels of depression, perceived stress and lower levels of self-efficacy than non-caregivers. In fact, people who spend at least 36 hours on providing care each week experience double the usual rate of depression.

Too many people don’t think about how their own health and well being will be affected when they volunteer to care for an ailing spouse or parent. While long-term care insurance can’t replace what families do, it can build on existing support by offering caregivers financial reimbursements, care giving training and other helpful services that make providing care easier.

Don’t leave the well-being of your loved ones to chance. Contact a long-term care insurance specialist for a consultation on your long-term care planning options.