59% Alzheimer’s caregivers report high emotional stress, 150,000 unpaid KY caregivers

November: National Family Caregivers Month

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. – Currently, there are more than 150,000 unpaid caregivers in Kentucky providing care to more than 75,000 living with Alzheimer’s, according to the Alzheimer’s Association. 

The Alzheimer’s Association reports 59 percent of Alzheimer’s caregivers say their emotional stress as high or very high, while 35 percent report declining health because of caregiving.

The Greater Kentucky and Southern Indiana Chapter Executive Shannon White said, “In the past two years, caregivers have really been through the wringer. They’ve been filled with fear, isolation, and grief…. What we’re trying to remind families is that you are not alone.”

White says the associations offers respite for caregivers in need of a break.

“You can drop your loved one off for one day or a weekend, and I don’t think a lot of families know that,” she explained. “You can test out some different locations, learn more about the programs that they offer, see how it feels. It’s just sort of dipping your toe into a higher level of care if your loved one needs it.”

White encourages caregivers to find that respite by joining their support groups.

“Our support groups are really incredible. We have some support groups that have been going on for over 20 years. Those connections that they’ve made are like family.”

Caregivers can call the Alzheimer’s Association’s helpline at 1-800-272-3900. All day, everyday, master clinicians are there to help guide you.

“They are giving so much to their loved one that’s dealing with Alzheimer’s or dementia, and we want them to know that we’re here for them when they need us,” said White. “This is going to give them the break that they need and help them become even better caregivers for their loved ones dealing with Alzheimer’s or other dementia.”

You can turn to the communityresourcefinder.org and alz.org/kyin.