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Fact sheet

Giving young carers the information they need

One of the major stresses that young carers frequently identify is that while they may be the person who spends most time looking after someone in their family, they are also often the person who knows least about his or her health condition.

Try to encourage parents to allow you to explain their health problem to their children. If this is not possible, there is no data protection barrier to giving a child or young person general information about the relevant health condition. Some of the questions that trouble many young carers include:

  • Can I catch it / will it happen to me too?
  • What caused it? Why us? Is it my fault?
  • Can I do anything to make the person better?
  • Will the person I look after get worse or die?
  • What should I do in an emergency?

Do not assume that even apparently mature, confident young carers are as assured on the inside as they appear on the outside.