Caring Role Affects Emotional Well-being - ABS Report
20 October 2011 at 2:12 pm
Some 36% of primary carers in Australia report that their physical or emotional well-being had changed due to their caring role, and 50% had interrupted sleep as a result of caring, according to a new report released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).
As well, there were 98,300 carers who reported a need for respite care but most (64%) of those needing respite had never used respite care services – and another 24% reported feeling satisfied due to their caring role.
For primary carers who cared for an average of 40 hours or more a week for all recipients, 47% reported that their physical or emotional well-being changed due to their caring role compared to 25% for those who cared for an average of less than 20 hours a week.
Those caring for 40 hours or more per week were also more likely to frequently feel worried or depressed (40% compared to 27% for those caring for less than 20 hours) .
Primary carers for a main recipient aged under 15 years who lived in the same household were less likely to report feeling satisfied due to their caring role than people caring for recipients aged 65 years and over (17% compared to 27%), and were more likely to feel weary or lacking energy (47% compared to 31%) (table 24).
On a brighter note, 36% of primary carers reported that their caring role had brought them closer together with the person to whom they provided the most care,
For primary carers who were caring for someone other than their partner, 36% reported that the caring role had brought them closer together with their partner. For most primary carers though, relationships with partners, other family members and friends were unaffected.
In 2009 there were 2.6 million carers in Australia providing assistance with core activities either for someone with a disability or for someone aged 60 years and over. Of those carers, 29% were primary carers.
A primary carer is the person aged 15 years and over who provides the most informal assistance with core activities (communication, mobility and self-care) to a person with a disability or to a person aged 60 years or over.
For more on the ABS report go to www.abs.gov.au