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With an aging population, it is only a matter of time before we are faced with needing to care for a loved one. This isn’t to say it is a bad thing. In fact, with all of the challenges a caregiver faces, many are happy to be the primary person there to take care of their family member.

They took care of you when you were a baby, so now that the time has come, it is sort of like paying it back. Plus, nobody will take care of your family like somebody in the family.

Yet, some of the challenges can be a surprise. And if you aren’t aware of these challenges, then you can’t really prepare. It’s better to know ahead of time what you are getting into. That way, you will be able to make good decisions, including how to know when it is time to think about an assisted care facility like Thrive Senior Living.

1 - It’s physically demanding

Having to lift somebody out of bed, even partially, is very difficult and can even lead to injuries. Walking somebody in a wheelchair can be quite tiring. And having to bath somebody will have you twist your body into some odd angles to be able to do a thorough job.

Some people are strong enough to do this, yet others find themselves exhausted by the end of the day. 

2 - Little time to yourself

Taking care of an elderly or infirm person is like a full-time job. Between the physical care and the mental part of organizing and planning, there is not much time left for you.

Travel is out unless you want to take the challenge of traveling with your patient. Social time becomes very difficult to manage as you aren’t able to be away for too long in case you are needed, or your schedule is very tight.

If you are in a romantic relationship, then this can cause a major strain.

3 - It’s expensive

Many people don’t realize how much the out of pocket expenses are going to be. Sure, there are programs that help with medications, physical therapy, and equipment. But, there are also expenses like the gas to bring your loved on to their appointments. 

Cooking, laundry and sometimes cleaning expenses usually come out of your own wallet. The sad reality is that many caregivers struggle for money as these expenses come on top of their own personal expenses like rent or mortgages, insurance and others.

Many caregivers eventually have to look for alternatives since the financial burden can be too much.

4 - You are an untrained health care provider

You’re going to find that you are being trained for life as a nurse without any formal education. It’s an education on the fly that you figure out as you go.

Many hours will be spent asking actual nurses how to do some of the things you need to be responsible for. Google will have to become your primary source of information when you run up against a wall. And, through it all, you have to make sure you are not making any mistakes that you’ve never been trained for.

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