At some stage in our lives many of us will need to take on a caring role for a loved one. No matter who you care for, the role of caregiver is an important one that brings many challenges and benefits.

The rewards of caregiving

People who care for a family member or friend says there are many benefits:

Opportunity for personal growth and the development of new skills

Prove to yourself that you can meet new challenges

You have the satisfaction of knowing you’ve helped someone who needs you and that you have done the best you can to improve their quality of life

Strengthening relationships with the people you care for and know how much they appreciate your help

Receiving recognition from family and friends

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The challenges of caregiving

Caring is a tough and demanding job and can significantly limit the lifestyles and opportunities available for families.

Carers often feel that they hold far too much responsibility in looking after the person they care for, without sufficient support. Thankfully there are many organisations who advocate for practical reforms that will help caregiver’s protection from the problems so often associated with caring.

Financial distress – many primary carers find themselves with only a modest income, making it difficult to pay for daily life, put money to one side or build for their own retirement. The cost of caregiving can also become enormous. Carers will often need to source additional money for extra costs such as utility bills and laundry, medicine, disability equipment, respite care and transportation, for example.

Health and welfare

Caring can be emotionally hard and exhausting in a physical sense too. Caregivers often fail to address their own health concerns and are more susceptible by as much as 40 percent to suffer from chronic health conditions. Some health problems, such as back problems, anxiety and depression, can be directly connected to the matter of caring.

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Many long-term carers feel tired and in need of refreshing with just one night of uninterrupted sleep becoming a dream. The chance of a holiday or a long period of time without the responsibility of caring becomes almost unobtainable. If you feel you would benefit from having Live in Carers, visit a site like

Social isolation and relationships

Many caregivers feel isolated and suffer from lost opportunities related to social activities, leisure and recreation. The huge needs and time involved in caregiving leaves little time for spending time with friends or even other family members.

Those who offer long-term care also experience powerful emotions, such as anger, guilt, sadness and distress that can spill over into other relationships and lead to conflict and frustration.


Many caregivers lose the chance to progress their careers, are unable to take up paid work or advance their training opportunities or education. Caring can take away the freedom and spontaneity of life.