“Honoring those who care for America’s Veterans” – Veterans Health Administration

veteran-walkerHolistic approach to promote stress reduction includes spending time in nature –

by Sharon Johnson MS OTR/L, Occupational Therapist, Minneapolis VA Medical Center

“Take Care to Give Care

“In November, VA, along with the entire country, celebrates National Family Caregivers Month. This is a time to honor and celebrate caregivers who selflessly provide care to ill, injured, or disabled Veterans. The theme of this year’s National Family Caregivers Month is ‘Take Care to Give Care.’

“According to multiple reports released by AARP in June 2015, an estimated 40 million family caregivers in the U.S. provide an estimated 37 billion hours of care valued at approximately $470 billion. This report also noted that caregivers spend an average of about 18 hours a week providing care. Four in ten caregivers who provide care to someone 50 or older say their caregiving situation is highly stressful. An additional 26 percent report moderate stress.

“When asked about the impact that caregiving has had on their health, 22 percent feel their health has gotten worse as a result of caregiving. According to a 2014 RAND study, family caregivers of post 9/11 Veterans report poorer levels of physical health than non-caregivers, an elevated risk for depression and low-quality relationships with care recipients.”

Read this article in its entirety at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs |Veterans Health Administration Website.

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