/ Health

Do you share concerns for unpaid carers?

This week is Carers Week, an annual awareness campaign recognising the vital contribution made by the UK’s 6.5 million unpaid carers. Are you concerned about the physical and mental strain many go through?

The strain of caring is jeopardising unpaid carers’ ability to care in the future. Lack of sleep, performing care tasks and the impact on their finances are named as the top stressors by unpaid carers following research published by Carers UK this Monday.

Struggling carers: the stats

Sadly, the research found that more than half of carers in the UK said they expect their physical and mental health and wellbeing to get worse in the next two years. Two in five said they expect to provide less care or no care at all in the future due to poor physical health, while a third felt that poor mental health would stop them providing care in the future.

Older people, especially those over 75 years old, were most likely to say they expected to be able to provide less or no care in the future because of poor physical health.

These facts and figures chime a chord with the stories we’ve been hearing for our campaign, Care Needs Care Now, as well as the research we’ve been carrying out on Elderly Care.

Ask your questions

We’re pleased to say that today we’re holding an extra special Ask the Experts live on our Facebook page. Emily Holzhausen, Director of Policy at Carers UK, will be joining us to answer your questions on being a carer.

You may recognise Emily – she was a guest author on Which? Conversation just last month.

If you’d like to ask Emily a question you can do so live from 7pm. Alternatively, simply drop it in the comments below and we’ll pass it on to the team.

Not on Facebook? No problem. We’ll deliver Emily’s answer for you back here.

Which? Elderly Care advice

As a part of our work on Which? Elderly Care to give practical information around all aspects of caring for a loved one, we are very mindful of the needs of carers themselves.

This is why we have articles about how to look after yourself and mental health concerns, including loneliness and depression, as well as guidance on carers’ rights at work, the benefits that are available for carers and how to arrange respite care.

Carers Week is all about celebrating the work that carers do as well as recognising the very real problems that come with the role.

What are your experiences like of caring for a loved one? Do you have concerns about the health and wellbeing of carers?


I do not need to post my experiences I have been brutally honest over the years on Which convo .Financial help via the government reduced then eliminated due to paying the IMF even my 50P was removed because I got a few £££ rise in my pension . Has it affected my heath ??? dam right it has , extreme stress over nearly 2 decades has caused all sorts of illnesses , time away ? how can you do that if your wife depends on YOU not social workers and the charges for food delivery etc . Real help is financial not costing you if you don’t have the means to pay . Yes I am saving and have saved HMG a lot of money , will THEY care -no chance ! too busy salting away via the City in “off-shore tax havens” MY view of this me-me-me society – sorry not printable.


As usually happens when I post on Which I have just received -2.30pm an email from the local council carers society of which I belong ( with card ) inviting me to travel 20 miles for a cup of tea and a chat , which ,obviously I am not able to do . This brings to mind that any carers out there should contact their local council for the address/email address of the officially backed regional council/local council Carers Organisation which will help them by meeting other carers in the same position so that they will not feel isolated nor be without a voice in the community . They have organised a raffle and tombola and a quiz night , my local carers is run by a female who is the council Training and Information Officer .

Selwyn Lawrence says:
12 June 2018

At this particular moment in time, I’m not a carer, However, I do know quite a lot of other people who are looking after the elderly, as well as disabled, or mentally handicapped persons. The government has targeted some of these people, who are not of a pensionable age, and subjected them to this so called health assessment, some of who have had their disability benefits withdrawn. When this happens, it places privately run care establishments at risk of closure, indeed many of them have done, at an alarming rate, because the majority of them have no savings. However there are a number of elderly persons, being cared for at home, in some cases by a relative, or possibly by agency carers, the latter is paid directly by the person being cared for, either by pension, or savings, or a combination of both.


yes ai am, I think they they shoud be paid fully by goverentement

Patricia Naiker says:
16 July 2018

I Have been a carer with social services for 25 year’s. Now retired. My husband had cancer 2years ago and I cared for him for twelve months. I was refused any allowance as I had my state pension. Not right he needed he care for hrs a day. Plus that to pay for taxis to and from hospital. Not right


Absolute agreement Patricia , as someone in the same position I get ZERO help from the government, even a small 50p/week was removed which allowed me reduced Community Council Tax. I have saved the State in today’s private care-home figures £100,000 and more (depending on charges could be much more ) already – return – you dont count in modern society – 19 years caring for my wife. not right is putting it mildly Patricia .

Sue Wright says:
20 August 2018

I have been caring for my Mum for 6 years, she is 87 and very frail. I have been living on this measly care allowance for all this time. I live on my own and don’t enough financial support.

I just want to say that carer’s are not thought anything of. There is not much support out there for us. It was a hard task to undertake. I don’t have life of my own anymore.


One thing I could say Sue contact your shire council and ask for their official Carer organisation email address or phone number and make sure your council recognise you as an official carer by getting registered with them and receiving a card that in the event of accident/illness they can contact the society and they will help you but also you will be invited to meet others in your situation and talk to them over tea/coffee and they also organise events so you will not feel isolated and alone. Your local Social Work Dept. will check if you are receiving the right benefits as well as reduced Council Tax.


In relation to carers in Scotland -“Carers (Scotland Act 2016 ) ” new measures are being introduced to ease the burden on things like respite care read https://www.gov.scot/Topics/Health/Support-Social-Care/Unpaid-Carers/Implementation/Carers-scotland-act-2016