BRISBANE, Australia, (UPI) — Researchers are looking for 1,500 family and spousal caregivers of those with dementia in Australia for an in-depth study of their experiences.
Professor Wendy Moyle and Dr. Siobhan O’Dwyer of Griffith University’s Research Centre for Clinical and Community Practice Innovation said an extensive investigation into the physical and mental health of people caring for family members with dementia.
“Many caregivers are putting their own physical and mental health at risk in order to support the person with dementia,” O’Dwyer said in a statement. “Without adequate support — both practical and financial — many family carers may not be able to continue providing vital care and support for people with dementia. Without them, the demand for aged care and the cost of dementia on the health system could skyrocket.”
More than 70 percent of community-dwelling (not living in nursing homes or assisted living) people with dementia are cared for by a family member or spouse, who provide round-the-clock care, many for years and years leaving the caregiver tired, stressed, with a lack of financial resources and struggling with their own physical health problems, the researchers said.
“We want to better understand the factors that contribute to poor health in carers, as well as those factors which lead to resilience and enable carers to ‘bounce back’ despite serious challenges,” O’Dwyer said.