The physical and emotional demands of caring for a loved one can be exhausting. Older caregivers are not the only ones putting their health and well-being at risk. Baby boomers are “aging” to the occasion. People who have assumed the role of caregiver for parents and / or grandparents while juggling work, children, and their homes, are facing increased risk for depression, chronic illness and a decline in quality of life. Family caregivers of any age are less likely than non-caregivers to practice self-care behaviors.
If we are like many caregivers, we have a hard time asking for help. Unfortunately, this attitude can lead to feelings of isolation, frustrations, and even depression. Here are a few tips for handling common challenges for caregivers:
• Eat a balanced diet
• Schedule rest periods
• Let family members and friends help with chores, meals, childcare, and shopping
• Keep lines of communication open for everyone
• Don’t overload a daily to-do list
• Join a support group
Caring for a loved one can be deeply rewarding, but it can also drain our physical and emotional energy. By relieving or managing stress of providing care for a loved one, we can better focus on our own needs and the needs of other family members. Support is only a phone call away. Call today to discuss your loved one’s needs.