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CCG issues self-care advice to carers during National Carer Week

CCG issues self-care advice to carers during National Carer Week

Fylde and Wyre CCG is marking National Carers Week by reminding local carers to look after themselves
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Fylde and Wyre Cinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is marking National Carers Week by reminding local carers to look after themselves.

With an estimated 23,000 carers across the area who look after family and friends to varying degrees, the CCG is highlighting the challenges they face and recognise their contribution.

In doing so the CCG has issued guidance for carers to bear in mind along with the consequences of not taking care of yourself.

The CCG is advising carers to get enough sleep to avoid high blood pressure, diabetes and obesity; to get flu jabs to avoid illness and to find help in dealing with stress, depression, guilt and resentment.

Dr Tony Naughton, clinical chief officer at the CCG and a GP in Thornton, said: “Carers make a fantastic contribution to the health and general mental wellbeing of people across the country – and many of them don’t even recognise the fact they are a carer.

“And yet their selfless attitude of putting others first could be problematic if carers do not make sure they look after themselves.

“It can be very demanding having to care for family or friends, but if a carer becomes ill it isn’t just they who suffer, but the person they care for as well.

“I would urge all carers in Fylde and Wyre to stop and think if they are spending enough time looking after themselves and if they are not, then start to do so.”

The advice also suggests carers tell their GPs about their situation to make it easier for the doctor to understand their needs.

Carers Week is an annual awareness campaign to recognise the vital contribution made by the UK’s 6.5 million carers.

According to a report from Carers UK, ahead of the awareness week, 51% of carers have let a health problem go untreated, while 50% have seen their mental health get worse.

Emily Holzhausen, the director of policy and public affairs at Carers UK, said: “Carers have told us that it makes a huge difference to their lives when they are supported by their local services and communities; whether that’s being offered a flexible appointment to see their GP, having flexible working policies from their employers, or their school raising awareness of caring and disability.

“Despite this, the majority of carers told us that their local community was not supportive of their caring role, which in turn is having a significant and negatively impact on their life chances.

She added that the purpose of the week is to call “on individuals, organisations and governments to think about what they can do to improve the lives of carers in their community”.

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