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(STLMoms) – More and more grandparents are spending their golden years raising their grandchildren.

According to the latest U.S. Census data, 4.9 million American children are being raised solely by their grandparents.

The number is almost double that of the 2000 Census. Experts say this may be a reflection of the economy. Either because of divorce, separation, or incarceration, more and more grandparents are stepping in as caregivers for the grandchildren.

And even in families where both parents are present, grandparents have become caregivers because it’s more dependable and affordable than daycare.