A cancer diagnosis can be stressful for patients and their families. At the Joan Karnell Cancer Center at Pennsylvania Hospital, our staff provides support and information to help patients and their families cope with the changes that occur as a result of cancer.
Caregivers, or care partners, are the unpaid loved ones who give the person with cancer physical and emotional care. Caregivers may be spouses, partners, family members, or close friends. Most often, they are not trained for the caregiver job. Many times, they may be the lifeline of the person with cancer. All of this work costs caregivers time and money. There may also be a cost to the caregiver's health and well-being, but often the caregiver just keeps doing what needs to be done and may suffer in silence.
You may be glad to put the well-being of the person with cancer above your own well-being. And your love for this person may give you the energy and drive you need to help them through this difficult time. Still, no matter how you feel about it, caregiving is a hard job! And many caregivers are there for their loved one 24 hours a day for months or even years. It may help you to know that caregivers who take care of their own needs and get the information, help, and support they need are better prepared to take care of their loved ones.
Download Resources for Caregivers