The Not So Young and Stress Less

I think that the hardest part of being a caregiver is dealing with the guilt. There is never enough time in the day. You bought the wrong kind of soap, stamps or razors or whatever it is…you just can’t catch a break. I think that life in general can sometimes be structured to wear us down. We think we are so smart being so connected and so able to communicate and work and multi-task.  Sometimes we just need to stop, push back and say…no.  I am the world’s WORST at this.  I don’t want to let anyone down.  In my mind…my goal is to help everyone.  But if I (or you) don’t take time to rest then how can we be good for anyone?  So here are some tips to de-program and reduce caregiver stress.

caregiver-stress

  • Ask for help. You know the help you have been providing.  But write down what that help entails.  No one person can do it alone.  It may even be time to consider the move to an assisted living.  Asking for help doesn’t mean you don’t care or that you are not going to be part of the team.  It just means you care enough to reach out.
  • Realize your limitations. It’s impossible to be all things to all people.  Sometimes our mindset that “only we can provide the help” is actually damaging for our loved ones.  You may be thinking that you are helping someone by enabling them to stay alone…when in actuality they may do better in a community setting and your “help” may be depriving them of a better situation. Meanwhile it may also be running you ragged!
  • Take time for you. If you think that only taking your loved ones to their doctor visits and cancelling your checkups is going to serve you well…think again. You need time to recharge your batteries and make sure that you are healthy both mentally and physically. Many caregivers suffer serious health issues while taking care of others. Be sure to take care of you!
  • Talk it out. Phone a friend.. Have dinner with your spouse or seek the counsel of a peer going through the same situation. You can even find support groups for caregivers.  Your stress is not in your head!  Not to mention that it is not good to keep it all inside.  Having a friendly chat can prove therapeutic and can also be a way to give and get advice for those sharing similar experiences.

caregiver-timeout

 

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Caregiver SOS: Do you need a break?

If you are the loved one of a senior adult, you probably check on your loved one to make sure things are going well.  Many of us have loved ones who live alone or that we help with transportation to physician appointments or other travel.  But if you are the primary caregiver for a senior adult, it’s a 24/7 responsibility.  Often the responsibility becomes too much or we just need a break or we may be facing our own health issue.  If this describes you, it’s time to learn about Respite Care services which some Assisted Living Communities provide.

Respite Care is a temporary move into an assisted living community when a caregiver needs a break, a vacation, or is facing a healthcare issue that makes caregiving impossible for a period of time.  Respite Care provides the peace of mind for caregivers to attend to their own needs while still assuring that their loved one is happy, healthy and provided for.

Respite Care accommodations can be for a week or a month and may vary from one assisted living community to another.  In most instances, pricing is set per day or per week based on a senior adult’s needs.  Many Respite Care services offer fully furnished accommodations and allow a senior to move in with just their personal belongings, medications, and hygiene items.  A Respite Care stay includes all the basic assisted living community services including assistance with medications, three meals per day with snacks, help with activities of daily living, social events and activities. Seniors moving into a Respite Care setting often enjoy the break from home and the socialization that an assisted living community provides. Respite Care is also a way to “try out” an assisted living community to see if it’s a good fit.

If the 24/7 caregiver role is becoming too much or if you need a short term break for travel or health reasons, check Respite Care services at an assisted living community as a practical solution with will offer a break and peace of mind for your loved one.

To learn more about Respite Care and Great Oaks Management, visit us today!