Before I began taking care of my mother (mild stroke, mild vasuclar dementia, severe arthritis, multiple falls) my health was near perfect - one cold ever five or six years and that's about it. I'd run half marathons, practice yoga, strength train at the gym, but this year as caregiving has intensified they have all gone by the wayside. No time, no energy, and also depression because this could go on for another ten years or more and there is no good end. (I am already thinking about how my daughter will never be allowed to be a caregiver).
I have a sitter for mom when I'm at work and one afternoon a week a sitter so I could go to the gym, but usually I need the time for chores or errands. Placing her is not an option because she hates it (she was in a nursing home for rehab and I'll admit it was a nice break for me) and it would bankrupt us (I'm trying to get my daughter to school with no debt) and here we can at least reverse mortgage the house when the time comes.
So specifically about my health - last year my blood pressure was perfect. Now I am on two medications. In the past year I've injured my shoulder trying to lift her (now I tell her that if she fall, she stays on the floor until the firemen arrive). In the past six moths I've had two colds, thrush, strep throat, an ear infection. I think my immune system is shot from caregiver stress.