Tired of spinning plates: an exploration of the mental health experiences of adults and/or older carers of adults with learning disabilities

Often when people talk about carers in the media or in research, they think about people caring for older adults but carers of adults with learning disabilities make up a quarter of all carers in the UK.

Illustration of plates spinning on sticks

We know little about the experiences of carers of adults with learning disabilities. We want to find out more about their lives, how caring impacts on their mental health, in positive and perhaps less positive ways.  We want to know about the support and services they currently receive and what carers think about the quality and availability of that support.  And, most importantly, we’d like to know what support they would find helpful.

The project starts on 1st October 2022 and ends on 30th November, 2024. The research involves carers, people with learning disabilities and researchers working together.  Our partners include Manchester Metropolitan University, Brandon University (Canada), RosSenCis Productions and Sibs, the charity for siblings of disabled people. We will use what we find out to produce information for carers and for people with learning disabilities as well as teaching and learning materials for professionals working with carers of adults with learning disabilities.

This project is funded by the National Institute of Health and Social Care Research (NIHR) Health and Social Care Delivery Research (HSDR) Project: NIHR135080.  The views expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of the NIHR or the Department of Health and Social Care.

You can find out more about the project on the Tired of Spinning Plates webpage.

Or please contact Professor Katherine Runswick-Cole k.runswick-cole@sheffield.ac.uk.

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