First 5 LA’s Five Reasons to Be Thankful for Multigenerational Families

According to a recent Pew Research study, more people than ever in the U.S. — some 64 million, or about 20% of the population — now live in multigenerational households. This also means that more families than ever are sharing childcare between generations. Close ties between generations can sometimes lead to more conflicts, but they are also cause for celebration. Here are five reasons to be thankful for multigenerational families and multigenerational caregiving this season:

  • According to the National Institutes of Health, people living in multigenerational households live longer than other people.
  • Grandparents who regularly spend time with grandchildren typically have higher cognitive function than those who spend less time with grandchildren, according to a study from the University of Melbourne.
  • According to a study by Boston College, maintained relationships between grandchildren and their grandparents helped decrease symptoms of depression in both groups.
  • Research shows that children need more than two caring adults in their lives to fully develop emotionally and socially. Multiple studies have shown that grandchildren who have lasting relationships with their elders tend to have stronger social skills with other children, as well as fewer behavioral problems.
  • Grandchildren introduce grandparents to new thoughts and ideas, and grandparents can impart to kids the wisdom and lessons they have learned throughout life. Having positive experiences with an older person can also help combat ageism and build kindness and tolerance.
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