mother and son drink coffee in their kitchen

Caregiving can impact your family and other relationships, health and emotional wellbeing. Juggling life, work and caregiving can be stressful and challenging, but there is support that can help.

Whether you’re managing family dynamics or looking for ways to care for yourself, AARP’s Caregiving Question and Answer Tool provides practical tips to guide you.

 

 
 

End of Life Care and Loss Q & A Home

Q:  What is hospice?

A:  Hospice is a holistic approach to caring for people who are terminally ill. — Read full answer.

 

Q: How does hospice work?

A: Hospice is for individuals facing a prognosis of six months or less to live and have chosen not to pursue curative treatment. — Read full answer.

 

Q: What is palliative care?

A: Palliative care is an umbrella term that refers to relieving symptoms for people whose illnesses do not respond to a curative treatment. — Read full answer.

 

 
 

Caregiver Care Q & A Home

Q:   How can I take time off work to care for my family member/friend?

A:  Under the Family and Medical Leave Act, eligible workers are entitled to 12 weeks per year of unpaid leave for family caregiving, without the loss of job security or health benefits. — Read full answer.

 

Q: How do I continue to provide care while trying to take care of myself?

A: Put your physical and mental needs first. Eat well, get enough sleep and make time to exercise. Stay on top of your own health by getting regular checkups.  — Read full answer.

 

Q:  How do I prepare for my own long-term needs?

A: It is smart that you recognize the importance of thinking about your own long-term care. AARP has several guides and worksheets that can help. — Read full answer.

 

Q: How can I find someone to help care for my family member/friend at home?

A: Various home care agencies can help connect you with skilled, in-home care professionals whose costs Medicare and other insurers may cover.  — Read full answer.

 

Q: How do I get my siblings to share caregiver duties and responsibilities?

A: Talk with your parents, decide what’s needed and plan who can take on which responsibilities. This organized approach can reduce the stress that comes from uncertainty. — Read full answer.

 

Q: How can I get a break or respite as a caregiver for my family member or friend?

A: Ask family members, friends from the neighborhood, faith groups, etc. who may be able to offer help. Consider forming a network or respite co-op with other caregiving families. — Read full answer.

 

Q: Where can I go to find help with caregiver stress and burnout?

A: As a caregiver, it’s common to feel overwhelmed — but untreated anxiety or depression is serious. Check with your doctor to rule out any medical conditions. — Read full answer.

 

Q: How can I find support groups for family caregivers?

A: The Family Caregiver Alliance website has a family care navigator tool to help you locate resources, including support groups near you. — Read full answer.

 

 
 

Family Talk Q & A Home

Q: How do I help my parents in downsizing their home?

A: Involve your parents in the decision-making process as much as possible without overwhelming them, which can be a delicate balance. — Read full answer.

 

Q: How do I broach the topic about driver safety with my aging parents?

A: When driving safety is not an immediate concern, have conversations about driving just to lay the foundation. —Read full answer.

 

Q: What should I do once my aging parent’s driving becomes an issue?

A: If you think your parents’ driving is unsafe and should be restricted or limited, don’t delay a more in-depth talk. — Read full answer.

 

Q: How do I get power of attorney on behalf of my parents?

A: It is important to realize that a power of attorney is a voluntary authorization that your parent has to have the legal mental capacity to create. — Read full answer.

 

Q: How do I get legal guardianship of my loved one?

A: The process differs by state and jurisdiction, but generally, you will need an attorney to prepare a petition to the appropriate court for guardianship. — Read full answer.

 

Q: What do I need to do to get my family member/friend’s legal and financial affairs in order?

A: Identify and organize the right documents. In addition, make sure your loved one has a will, a health care power of attorney and a power of attorney for financial decisions. — Read full answer.

 

Q: How can I deal with my family member/friend’s challenging behaviors?

A: You are not alone. Many other caregivers struggle with challenging behaviors. Find a support group in your community where you can meet other caregivers and share your experiences. — Read full answer.

 

Q: How can I get the person I am caregiving for to accept help?

A: Try to be open and honest and share your feelings. Present your concerns as just that — your concerns. Use others as examples to open the conversation or make your point. — Read full answer.

 

Q: How do I talk to my parents about their long-term wishes?

A: First, come up with an icebreaker on the topic such as: “I’m starting to think about estate planning. Do you have any advice?” A talk of this scope will likely take place over time. — Read full answer.

 

Q: How do I get my siblings to share caregiver duties and responsibilities?

A: Talk with your parents, decide what’s needed and plan who can take on which responsibilities. This organized approach can reduce the stress that comes from uncertainty. — Read full answer.

 

Q: My family members don’t agree about how best to care for our loved one. What is the best way to work through this?

A:  Speak with your parents and decide what’s needed and plan who can take on which responsibilities. To make things flow more easily, create a schedule and give all those involved a copy. — Read full answer.

 

Q: What is a power of attorney?

A: A power of attorney is a legal document in which an individual chooses to authorize another person to act on his or her behalf for any purpose spelled out in the document. — Read full answer.

 


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