Psychological Effects of Caregiving

1745 WordsJan 26, 20187 Pages
Recent social trends such as increased life expectancy and an aging population, has played an important role in the increased use of informal health care. Advancements in medical technology have allowed people to live longer (Choi et al., 2008). However, as the life expectancy and number of aging individuals continues to rise, so does the need for services to support aging individuals, and people suffering from chronic illness and disability (Choi et al., 2008). The number of individuals who are 65 and older is expected to reach 88.5 million by 2050 (Sheridan et al., 2014). Additionally, elderly individuals with poor health are expected to dramatically increase (Sheridan et al., 2014). Given these demographic expectations, the health care system will continue to be strained for resources, and alternatives will be required to alleviate some of this strain. Research suggests family members and friends make up the majority of individuals informal network, and provide the majority of care to older individuals (Choi et al., 2008; Schulz & Sherwood, 2008). Further research confirms women provide a large portion of informal care, espescially wives and daughters of the care receivers (Ross, 2000; Schulz & Sherwood, 2008; Pinquart & Sorensen, 2006; Aronson, 1992; Rutman, 1996; Navaie-Waliser et al., 2002). Schulz & Sherwood (2008) define informal caregiving as unpaid care provided by an individual, usually a family or friend, rather than a professional who is reimbursed for
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