How a Phoenix-based nonprofit is helping to care for caregivers
Duet is working with a Valley doctor to host a free webinar for caregivers on Wednesday afternoon.
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) - It’s the holiday season which can bring a lot of joy and fun to families! But for caregivers who look after their loved ones, it can be a complicated and stressful time.
November is National Family Caregivers Month and the Phoenix-based nonprofit Duet is partnering with a Valley doctor to help caregivers and make sure they look after their own health. Family caregivers are Arizonans who are caring for a spouse, parent or another family member because they love them and wouldn’t not do it, said Deanne Poulos with Duet.
Poulos says the caregiver population in our state is growing exponentially as people age and nationally, about one in five Americans are now serving as caregivers.
On Wednesday afternoon, Duet is partnering with Dr. Patricio Reyes to host a free webinar called “Bridging the Gap - Caring for the Caregiver.” Dr. Reyes is based at the VA, a neurologist with decades of research who has worked with Alzheimer’s and dementia patients. He’s seen firsthand the mental and physical toll caregiving can take. In fact, he says three caregivers of his patients suffered heart attacks when he first started.
“Often the caregiver is so engrossed in the care, they overlook their own health, emotional, spiritual, physical,” said Poulos. “And sometimes proceed their loved one in death. Well, then who is left to care for the loved one? Plus you’re as important as the person whom you are caring. You’re both important.”
The webinar is free and starts at 3 p.m. Here is a link to register.
Duet also hosts support groups for caregivers, with about 150 who regularly attend class. Poulos thinks reaching out is a sign of strength.
“And when people do and they come to our group, they see that they are welcomed everyone feels the same way. Everyone understands. We might have feelings or sensations that we don’t feel comfortable having,” she said. “We love our person but this is frustrating. Perhaps there is resentment, anger and fear.”
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