Caregiver Stress: Depression, the Silent Partner- Don't Wait Too Long to Get Home Care Help

Posted: 10/11/2013 1:26 PM by Interim HealthCare

Taking care of a loved one who can no longer manage their own care in the comfort and privacy of their own home can seem like a noble act, but it can also lead to caregiver stress, which can, and often does, lead to depression.

The question that you need to ask yourself before embarking on this journey is whether you can, or should, provide this level of care to your loved one.

It’s tough enough for your loved one to have to deal with the new need to rely on someone else to help them manage their own affairs.  Add to that the stress they feel having to be dependent once again, and it should be relatively easy to understand the emotions they feel.

That’s one of the reasons why you decided to be a family caregiver.

You wanted your loved one to be as comfortable as possible and figured that if you could keep them from having to invite a “stranger” into their home, you would be offering them something positive!  However, it usually isn’t long before caregivers realize that the stress of providing this level of care to a loved one can lead to depression.


You may realize that you have to give up a great deal of your own life, the things that you used to enjoy. You may be running from your job to your loved one’s home and don’t have the time to do much else. When you have to sacrifice the things that you once enjoyed in life in order to take care of someone else, it can lead to depression.

However, if you’re constantly running from one place to the next, then you might not realize that you are dealing with this level of stress. When that happens, depression can sneak in and you could be feeling rundown, tired, and disconnected from everything in your life that used to hold positive value for you.

Depression is sometimes considered the silent partner when it comes to being a family caregiver, and it can be devastating. The depression that you feel could be contagious, leading to a lower quality of care for your loved one. Even when you decide to finally hire a home care provider, it may be difficult to break away from the depression that you feel.

Be aware that caregiver stress can, and often does, lead to some level of depression and if you don’t recognize the symptoms at the time, it could have devastating consequences.

It’s important to seek help early in the senior care process. Respite care services are a great way to know your family member is being cared for while you take that much need break for yourself. Remember it's ok to enjoy your own life and activities knowing that Mom or Dad is being cared for by a professional.

If you or an aging loved one are considering home care services, contact Interim HealthCare today. G+