New research has found that caregivers who are currently watching over a patient who has Alzheimer's disease are more likely to develop the condition themselves, particularly if the responsibilities are emotionally and physically burdensome, according to WebMD.com.
Factors such as high stress, isolation, depression and poor lifestyle habits all have an influence on a healthy retirement living.
"People put their lives on hold to care for somebody else, to care for a spouse. And to think that doing that puts them at risk for being in the same situation, and they see the person declining - especially with dementia - it's a scary disease," social worker Leah Eskenazi told the website.
Various research correlates with the findings. In 2004, a Harvard study found that caregivers who looked after a disabled spouse were 31 percent more likely to score lower on cognitive tests. A 2010 report showed that couples who took care of a loved one with dementia were 600 percent more likely to develop the disease themselves.
The Alzheimer's Association estimates that there are currently 5.4 Americans suffering from Alzheimer's disease across the country and 14.9 million caregivers are looking after them. Eighty percent of these responsibilities are home care duties.