My Days in Solitary Confinement

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When politicians coldly debate “cuts” to various health support services, such as Medicare and Medicaid, many of them do not realize or care that they are adding to the stressful burdens of millions of Americans who sacrifice their lives to help a spouse, or parent, or some other loved one who needs a helping hand. Approximately one quarter of the US population has at least one chronic condition, many of these are elders who need care and assistance. In the United States alone between 30 and 38 million adults provide regular ongoing care for a family member or loved one. The stressors and burdens of caregiving have a negative impact on the health and well-being of aging care givers. Most caregivers are female with an average age of sixty-nine. The burdens of providing care can be overwhelming. Caregiving stress has been shown to result in a variety of physical and psychological concerns such as chronic anxiety, depression, and loneliness. This qualitative study explores the stressors and burdens of immigrant caregivers.