Increase in older people being carers
- 30 Apr
There is an increasing number of older people in England becoming carers along with a rise in the signs of the pressures looking after loved ones can have on their health.
Age UK and Carers UK have found that 1.2m carers are over the age of 65, which is a 25% rise in the past decade. The number of carers aged over 85 has doubled to 87,000, reports the BBC.
The charities are calling for better support for these older people.
The research by the charities - based on Census data from 2001 and 2011 and their own analysis - estimated the care provided by older carers was worth £15bn a year.
The majority of carers over 65 are looking after a partner, although some are looking after elderly parents, or grandchildren, or relations with disabilities, according to the charities research.
Feelings of depression and anxiety were cited by one in three carers aged 65 to 74 and nearly half of the older age group.
Carers UK chief executive Helena Herklots said: "Caring is something that touches all of us at some point in our lives but this research shows that the number of older people are caring for others at a time when they are more likely to need care themselves. Action is needed to ensure that older carers have the support they need so they don't have to care alone."
Councillor Izzi Seccombe, of the Local Government Association, said: "Councils recognise that informal carers do a challenging job in very difficult circumstances."
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