National League of NursingNational League of Nursing

The Voice of Nursing Education

Positive Aspects of Family Caregiving

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The act of caregiving is known to come with physical, mental, and emotional stress. Moreover, when family members need assistance due to a disability or an illness, caregivers have varying levels of readiness or experience to step into the caregiver role. Thus, it is understandable that caregiving is often seen as overwhelming and stressful for families.

It is important for clinicians to understand that there are positive aspects of caregiving that help motivate family members to take on this important and needed role in our communities. Nurses are often important participants in the decision-making process, when individuals must decide whether to transition a family member to a nursing home or have that person remain at home, cared for by members of the family.

In efforts to help our elders age in place in their homes, it is important for nurses to be able to recognize and understand the positive aspects of caregiving. Communicating these aspects can help families see the full picture when assuming the role. This understanding also provides a mechanism for nurses to support families along the journey.

Positive Aspects of Family Caregiving