- Are you caring for a child or teen with special needs?
- Do you help your spouse, parent or friend with their mental health needs?
- Do you help someone with their personal hygiene or feeding?
- Do you regularly help someone with transportation, shopping, finances?
- Are you accompanying a person at the end of life?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, you are probably a caregiver.
A caregiver provides support to one or more people in their life (family, friends, neighbours, etc.) who have:
- a temporary or permanent incapacity
- of a physical, psychological, psychosocial or other nature
- regardless of their age or living environment.
The support provided by the caregiver may be:
- continuous or occasional
- short or long-term
- offered freely and in a non-professional, informed and voluntary capacity.
The objective is to promote the person’s recovery and to maintain and improve their quality of life at home or in another living environment.
Did you know that 1 out of 5 people in Quebec - about 1.5 million people - are caregivers?
It is essential that caregivers and those around them recognize this role because it allows them to be more aware of the presence of stress, fatigue and distress. This will also allow them to have better access to resources to help support their quality of life and help minimize potential negative effects on their physical and psychological health.
There are many positive benefits to providing care, such as strengthening the emotional connection with the person being cared for. However, the demands of caregiving can become overwhelming, resulting in the following:
- Anxiety and stress
- Irritability and anger
- Feeling overwhelmed
- Decline of physical health
- Social isolation
- Financial problems
- Absenteeism at work or school
- Difficulties with concentration
- Problems in relationships
If you identify with one or more of these signs, do not hesitate to talk to someone or to ask for support from a caregiver resource.
- Break social isolation (need for social stimulation)
- Help with household tasks
- Individual and Group psychosocial support
- Financial support (e.g. fiscal measures, transportation)
- Equipment and/or support (e.g. medical or rehabilitation equipment)
- Information and training
- Flexible work or study schedule
- Services or information in language of choice (e.g. use of an interpreter)
- Accompaniment (e.g. healthcare system navigation)
- Access to healthcare and social services
- Recognition and respect for your experience as a caregiver