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Professional Caregiver Grief

Today one of the fastest and most needed professions is that of caregivers.  With the burgeoning aging population, we know that the professional caregiver will be in great demand in years to come.

Just because a professional caregiver is a paid position it does not mean that they don’t have the need to process their grief when a client dies.  This is one of the most over looked issues that needs to be addressed.  Thus we need to pay attention to the needs of our professional caregivers when they have a client pass.

The grief of a caregiver may be complicated. Sometimes a caregiver expresses a sense of relief when client has passed due to the experience of witnessing the struggle and discomfort their client suffered. While it may be stress relieving, having a possible anticipation of the death as explained in the article, it can be a complicated grief as well. Positive grief for caregivers is not the only result of an anticipate death.  In fact, it has been noted that 10-20% of caregivers experience high stress while 30% are at high risk of clinical depression when their client passes.

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Caregivers can experience “complicated grief”, which is grief that is of abnormal reaction time, suppressed or postponed.  In fact 20% of caregivers experience this a year post the death. Complicated grief is reasonable to be seen a year after because it’s a prolonged disorder. It is often a developed feeling of missing and needing the person who has died.

A lack of support is a way that a caregiver can end with negative grief l.  Supporting the caregiver after a death from one of their clients could help reduce the possibility of unhealthy and negative bereavement. Some caregivers need attention and professional help to help them grieve for the client they just lost.  Which means that the caregiver must take responsibility for asking for help.  At New Horizons In-Home Care if a caregiver is needing help with a client loss they should contact their Nurse Care Manager related to the case for assistance with help.