Just as the reasons why someone becomes a carer vary greatly, the variety of tasks that a carer fulfils is diverse. They can include;
- Practical household tasks such as cooking, cleaning, washing up, ironing, paying bills and financial management.
- Personal care such as bathing, dressing, lifting, administering medication and collecting prescriptions.
- Emotional support such as listening, offering advice and friendship.
There is not a minimum time spent caring or age restriction that “qualifies” someone as being more or less of a carer.
Someone in their seventies who cares 24/7 for their spouse with severe dementia is a carer. A teenager who offers emotional support and helps to keep the household running as and when the fluctuating nature of their parent’s mental health requires it — is also a carer. The two situations are very different. Both are individual examples of the 7 million carers in the UK today.