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Caregivers Don't Breathe Easy
Ask any parent: Taking care of others is a tough job. However, that job becomes especially emotionally draining when it’s end-of-life care. And some end-of-life caregivers are at an increased risk for mental illnesses, such as depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
People that took care of terminal lung transplant patients have a four to five times higher risk of suffering depression and PTSD symptoms than an average person, according to recent research. Researchers recommend caregivers meet with trained counselors to help ease the emotional and financial stress caregivers incur from their job.
It's curious that the study compared lung transplant patient caregivers to the general population and not to other caregivers who supported patients through different end-of-life circumstances. These caregivers suffer similar increased risks for depression and PTSD. Perhaps those studies are still to come.
Have you ever been an end-of-life caregiver? What were your experiences? [HealthDay]