THE IMPORTANCE OF GRANDPARENTS

Grandparents have always played an essential role in bringing up children, but nowadays, more people rely on their parents to help them with their kids. The unconditional love of grandparents benefits children in many ways. A grandparent’s love and warmth creates a special bond between both generations. Most important, it gives them a feeling of comfort and security.

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BUILDING A LONG-DISTANCE RELATIONSHIP WITH YOUR GRANDCHILDREN

Distance makes the heart grow fonder, right? Phooey, it stinks! Forming and maintaining bonds with grandchildren long distance can be challenging and sometimes frustrating. Luckily, technology helps bridge the gap of physical distance.

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ENJOYING ROAD TRIPS WITH GRANDCHILDREN

The summer months provide the perfect opportunity to spend extra time with your grandchildren. Perhaps a week at Grandma and Grandpa’s house is something the children look forward to every year, but this summer, why not go on a little adventure? Road trips can create a whole new family experience, something the children will remember forever.

….FULL ARTICLE

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The average caregiver serves in this role for four years. Only 30 percent provide care for less than a year. Twenty-four percent provide care for more than five years, and 15 percent of caregivers provide care for 10 years or more.


More information about caregiving can be found at www.caregiver.org/caregiver-statistics-demographics

Though definitions and criteria vary, numerous studies of informal caregiving in the United States generally define a caregiver as an unpaid individual – spouse, partner, family member, friend or neighbor – who assists another person on a regular basis with activities of daily living and/or medical tasks. The caregiver feeds the care receiver if necessary. He or she helps the person dress each morning and undress and prepare for bed each night. A caregiver may help the care receiver use the bathroom. If the care receiver is fully or partially incontinent, the caregiver changes diapers as needed. The caregiver often gives medicines. He or she may take the care recipient’s blood pressure or perform blood sugar tests or other medical procedures and keep a written record for the person’s physician.


About 43.5 million caregivers in the United States provided unpaid care to someone in the past 12 months, as reported by the National Alliance for Caregiving and the AARP. About 34.2 million Americans provided unpaid care to an adult age 50 years or older in 2015. Most of these (82 percent) cared for one other adult, but 15 percent cared for two adults and 3 percent cared for three or more adults. In 2015, the Alzheimer’s Association estimated about 15.7 million family caregivers were caring for someone with Alzheimer’s disease or other dementia.

WHO ARE THE CAREGIVERS?

The average age of home caregivers is 49.2 years. Forty-eight percent are 18 to 49 years old and 34 percent are older than 65 years. The number of hours given to caregiving increases with the age of the caregiver. Caring for parents is the primary situation for caregivers between the ages of 50 and 64 years, with 70 percent of this group involved in parent care.


More than 75 percent of caregivers are female. Women may spend as much as 50 percent more time providing care than men. Sixty-five percent of care receivers are female, with an average age of 69.4 years. However, among caregivers who are spouses aged 75 years or more, both sexes provide equal amounts of care. Caregivers who spend 21 hours or more weekly at caregiving tasks are nearly four times more likely to be caring for a spouse or partner. Some studies show 36 percent of female caregivers perform the most difficult caregiving tasks, such as bathing, toileting and dressing, compared to 24 percent of male caregivers. Men, some studies find, are more likely to help with finances, arrangement of care and other tasks that, while important, are less physically burdensome. Forty percent of male caregivers were found to use paid assistance for a loved one’s personal care.

MARTHA EVANS SPARKS

Martha Evans Sparks is a Staff Writer for Living Well 60+ Magazine

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