Scientists from Bremen have found that those who care for family and friends at home are at risk of losing their own health. However, the main concern for relatives falls on the shoulders of relatives and friends, concludes one of the authors of the study, conducted at the initiative of the Barmer health insurance company, Rolf Müller from the University of Bremen.
The main subject of the study was the study of the health status of relatives caring for the elderly or family members in need of assistance, the scientist explains in an interview with DW. Conclusion: such concern for loved ones often affects the health of people who provide assistance.
The respondents named stress as one of the main problems. More than half of those surveyed said they had experienced depression. Almost 40 percent of them suffer from lack and sleep disturbance, 30 percent feel the hopelessness of the situation. Every fifth person experiences fear of the future.
“You often feel completely alone, left to fend for yourself,” recalls Christina Schmitz from Heilbronn. For three years she has been caring for an elderly mother. Despite a serious oncological disease, the daughter almost to the very end provided home care to the weakening woman before her eyes. According to 55-year-old Christina, it took her more than two years to recover and recuperate after her mother’s death. Christina could not break the promise given to her mother “not to take her to the hospital”. And in the most difficult time for them, she did not even know that it was possible to use professional help, she admits.
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