Many caregivers of older adults express satisfaction with their labors of love. But they often face challenges, especially when caring for people with chronic diseases such as dementia, diabetes, or heart failure. The day-to-day tasks may seem endless: arranging doctor’s appointments and transportation, moving the person safely around, ensuring proper nutrition, and much more. Difficult situations, such as hospitalization and making decisions about long-term care, also arise. The National Institute on Aging at NIH has information that can help caregivers approach many of these issues.
The publications, websites, and other resources offer information and advice for family caregivers. Many are based on the results of scientific research that have been “translated” into practice. Resources especially for professional caregivers are listed at the end of this section.
The Resources for Enhancing Alzheimer's Caregiver Health (REACH) trials, funded by NIA and the National Institute for Nursing Research tested strategies for helping dementia caregivers manage their stress and emotional burden. The interventions included education on dementia, training in specific caregiving skills, and encouragement and techniques for physical and emotional self-care. The REACH findings are now being put into practice through two Federal agencies, the Veterans Administration (VA) and the Administration on Aging (AoA). Learn more about REACH »