Elder Caregiving: The New Normal
with Karen Hooker and Carolyn Mendez-Luck, Oregon State College of Public Health and Human Sciences
At some point in our lives, most of us will face the need to provide care for an adult family member. With the growing number of Americans over the age of 65 already at an all-time high, caring for elderly parents or partners is becoming a common experience.
Yet this time-honored practice carries significant uncertainties. What exactly is caregiving? Who gives care and what are common types of care? How do the givers and receivers of care perceive its pros and cons, and what how do their preferences vary? How can we prepare ourselves to take on this role that is still often unexpected?
The science of caregiving has developed over the last thirty years into a robust area of research. Karen Hooker and Carolyn Mendez-Luck of the Oregon State University College of Public Health and Human Sciences will discuss their studies on ways to promote resilience, to lessen stress and to protect the mental and physical health of caregivers. They will also cover special topics related to culture, gender, technology and family dynamics.
Hooker is the Jo Anne Leonard Endowed Director of the Center for Health Aging Research. Her research focuses on perception of the self in understanding mental and physical health. She has examined caregiving for people with Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.
Mendez-Luck is an assistant professor of human development and family sciences as well as health management and policy. She has studied family caregiving and aging-related health disparities in Latino families.