“At The Palace Gardens Homestead, we often work with families who realize they simply feel
overwhelmed caring for their partners,” explained Elizabeth Martinez, Director of Sales. “Most
caregivers are self-sacrificing, often putting themselves last and paying less attention to their
own needs. This can have devastating long-term consequences for both the caregiver and their
Caregiving spouses are less likely to get enough rest, have time to rest when sick and maintain a healthy diet or exercise. Adult children may not realize how difficult their parents are handling caregiving because typically the parent simply may say, “We’re doing just fine”.
According to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, being a caregiver who is experiencing mental or emotional strain is an independent risk factor for mortality among elderly spousal caregivers. The study found that caregivers (aged 66-96) who experience caregiving-related stress have a 63% higher mortality.
Other studies have had similar findings. Elderly spouses serving as caregivers experience higher rates of influenza and pneumonia—conditions that together constitute the fourth leading cause of death among people aged 75 or older. Feeling overwhelmed for extended periods can lead to depression, which is associated with heart disease and more debilitating outcomes for patients who already have heart disease.
At The Palace Gardens, we understand the stress and emotional toll caregiving can create. In fact, our assisted living and memory care community has been the ideal solution for older couples who realized—despite their best efforts—they could no longer provide the necessary care their spouse needed.
While The Palace Gardens assisted living may be the best option for the caregiver, a spouse needing memory care can live in our memory care neighborhood within the building. It’s a win- win for the couple. The caregiver has peace of mind knowing their spouse is receiving the best care possible and, since they are both within The Palace campus, spending quality time together isn’t an issue.
Additionally, the caregiver no longer feels isolated and burdened with day-to-day responsibilities. He or she is surrounded by friendly staff and neighbors who share similar experiences.
“Residents whose partners provided care at home often thrive and flourish once they’ve arrived at The Palace. They, too, experienced feelings of guilt and feared they were preventing their spouses from living a meaningful, active life. They begin eating better and participating in activities. A whole world opens to a couple,” she explained. If you have questions about the lifestyle changes that go with aging, or if you’d like to be invited to a social event at The Palace Gardens, please call us at 305-247-0446, or email Elizabeth@thepalaceus.com.