Anyone who has acted as a caregiver or whose loved one has acted as a caregiver will understand that the cost of caregiving goes far beyond finances. Caregiving is essential and meaningful, but it can also produces emotional stress that takes a toll on health, is costly in terms of time and energy. In fact, MetLife findings show that adult children over age 50 who act as caregivers for their parents are more likely to experience health difficulties than those who are not caregivers. Health, family and emotional well-being; these are things we can't put a price on. But when it comes to cash, here's how the numbers roll:
Further findings from AARP show that nearly 4 in 10 family caregivers report a significant degree of financial strain as a result of providing care. Also, while most family caregivers have full or part-time jobs, they work an additional average of 18 hours per week providing care.
The MetLife Study of Caregiving Costs to Working Caregivers showed that the total estimated aggregate lost wages, pension and Social Security benefits of children acting as caregivers for their parents is nearly $3 trillion.
These figures show that the costs of caregiving are high, but I think every family caregiver knows the benefits far outweigh the costs. Giving care to someone you love is priceless. If you have a caregiver in your life, remember to show them support. They are hard workers who are willing to sacrifice for the right reasons.
Are you faced with the costs of caregiving? The Alzheimer's Association provides a helpful breakdown of costs that a caregiver may encounter, and advice on how to handle them. If your loved one is in need of care beyond the scope of what you can provide, it may be time to consider nursing home care. We can help you create a plan to pay for long-term care without risking your loved one's savings. Contact us for a free consultation.