In our FAQs and Facts section we answer some common questions about caring and give you some statistics.
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What is a carer?
A carer is anyone who provides unpaid support to a family member or friend who is ill, disabled or has mental health or drug and alcohol problems, who could not manage without their help or support.
For example, a carer can be someone looking after a parent with dementia, a partner who has suffered a stroke or has cancer, a child with a learning disability or life limiting condition or a brother who has suffered a head injury.
Anyone can become a carer.
What is the difference between a 'carer' and a 'care worker'?
A 'carer' is someone who provides unpaid care and support to someone such as a family member, friend or neighbour.
A 'care worker' is someone who is employed and paid to care for someone because they may be ill, disabled or have a certain condition . The care worker may assisting and supporting the person with their daily living tasks, such as washing or dressing.
Why do carers need support?
Many carers face emotional and financial difficulties. Many have given up their income, employment prospects or pension rights to care for someone. Others attempt to juggle jobs and their caring responsibilities. Taking on a caring role can lead to feelings of isolation, frustration, depression and result in ill health. Access to information, emotional support, advocacy, financial support and opportunities to take a break can help manage the impact of caring on their lives.
- There are approximately 6.5 million carers (1 in 8 adults)
- By 2037, it is predicted that the number of carers will increase to 9 million
- 58% of carers are women and 42% are men
- More than 1 million people care for more than one person
- Carers save the economy £132 billion per year (approximately, £19,336 per carer)
- More than 3 million people are juggling caring whilst also in employment
- Due to the demands of caring, 1 in 5 carers are forced to give up work altogether
- Due to the stress and physical demands of caring, 625,000 carers suffer mental and physical ill health
- Over 1.3 million people provide over 50 hours of care per week.
Statistics from Carers UK website