Time Use Survey Indicates Seniors Are Frequently Caregivers

Tim Watt  |  July 6, 2012

As the baby boomer generation begins to turn 65, it is unsurprising to many that the number of informal, unpaid caregivers is on the rise. As a greater number of Americans become senior citizens, other older adults become their caregivers, according to The Huffington Post

The Bureau of Labor Statistics' 2011 American Time Use Survey found that last year, about 16 percent of the U.S. population was providing senior care - representing one out of every six people over age 15 in the nation, the news outlet reports. More than 60 percent of all eldercare comes from Americans who are age 45 or older, with a sixth of all care for seniors provided by other seniors.

This finding does not necessarily only reflect the number of spouses who serve as caregivers. The study found that only 4 percent of elder care is provided to a spouse or domestic partner, and 85 percent of care is provided to someone living outside the caregiver's household.

Caregiving can be stressful for caregivers of any age, but it can be particularly tiring for those who are also consciously trying to age healthfully. Respite care and other senior living options might be a good avenue for older caregivers to explore for their loved one. 

Download a free copy of the Sunrise Caregiver Guide today to support caregivers in your life.