As loved ones age, close family members and friends often take on the role of caregiver. One study found that, over a 12-month period, 34.2 million Americans reported providing unpaid care to an adult over the age of 49.
Caregiving is a time-consuming, emotionally demanding responsibility. While it can be mutually beneficial in some ways, there is a real risk of burnout. One way to help mitigate this risk? Adult day programs.
What types of services do adult day programs provide?
The concept of adult day care services is simple. They offer a place for adults that need assistance to take part in social activities, all while being supervised by professionals. The day programs generally offer:
- Recreational activities
- Medical services (in some cases)
Adult day programs are usually open during standard work hours, but might offer weekend and evening hours too. If the cost is a concern, there may be ways to help plan ahead to reduce the burden in a way that is manageable and sensible.
The benefits of adult day care
There are many benefits for adults with disabilities that participate in adult day programs. First off, it provides them with an opportunity to socialize, which can be difficult if otherwise isolated. Attending also gives a way to improve daily living skills and potentially receive certain care or treatment.
All of this happens while in a properly supervised setting.
The benefits of adult day programs can be just as important for a caregiver. Having their loved one take part can:
- Give the caregiver a mental and physical break
- Provide the caregiver an opportunity to handle other business or work
- Offer peace of mind, as they know a loved one should be safe
There is another long-term positive in all this. If you’re more refreshed and not burnt out, you may be able to serve as a caregiver for a longer period of time. This means your loved one might not have to move to a long-term care facility as quickly as you may have thought.