Family members often assume caregiving duties due to circumstances related to an aging loved one’s health. A loved one may have developed a progressive medical condition that influences family members to provide care. There are several factors new caregivers should consider that could benefit them and their loved ones.
1. Take Care of Yourself
It can be easy to become engrossed in daily responsibilities and caregiving to the point of neglecting or sacrificing your own wellbeing. However, you cannot perform all tasks effectively when you’re not in optimal health. Recognize your limitations, eat properly, get enough sleep, and take time for yourself. Develop strategies to manage stress, connect with others, and get some type of physical activity to stay energized and fit.
Families who find it difficult to care for their aging loved ones without assistance can benefit greatly from professional respite care. Rhode Island family caregivers who need a break from their caregiving duties can turn to Home Care Assistance. Using our proprietary Balanced Care Method, our respite caregivers can encourage your loved one to eat well, exercise regularly, get plenty of mental and social stimulation, and focus on other lifestyle factors that promote longevity.
2. Communicate with Your Loved One
Just because your loved one needs assistance doesn’t mean he or she relinquishes the right to have an opinion. Talk to your loved one to find out how he or she prefers receiving help, and take his or her opinion and wishes into consideration. Conversations may also include talking about your limitations and expectations.
3. Learn the Basics
Many communities offer basic caregiving classes that cover a wide range of topics, from basic anatomy and disease processes to medication management and the skills needed for daily care. Caregiving classes may provide some tips and tricks on how to help seniors with dressing as well as recommended safety precautions.
4. Understand Your Loved One’s Condition
Learning all you can about your loved one’s medical condition can help you determine the type of care required. Additionally, you need to know how the condition might progress and what signs or symptoms require further medical intervention.
5. Establish a Network
If you provide care on a daily basis, create a backup plan. You should be able to take time off to rest and rejuvenate. Depending on your loved one’s mental and physical health, you might need someone to step in so you have the chance to run errands or handle other responsibilities.
Consider hiring a professional caregiver if your loved one needs help with daily tasks or you need a break to run errands. Although it may be challenging to find reliable, highly rated home care service, you can turn to Home Care Assistance. Our respite and live-in caregivers are expertly trained to assist seniors with a wide array of important tasks, including cooking, bathing, light housekeeping, and exercise.
6. Find Support
Caregiving tasks can become overwhelming for many reasons. You should be able to turn to someone for emotional and psychological support. Other family members may provide a listening ear or a shoulder to cry on when necessary. In addition, many communities have support groups where caregivers meet and share their experiences with each other. By attending meetings, you’ll have the chance to gain valuable insight, tips, and tricks from more experienced caregivers. Some support groups also offer opportunities to gain knowledge from guest speakers.
Caring for a senior loved one can be challenging for families who don’t have expertise or professional training in home care, but this challenge doesn’t have to be faced alone. Family caregivers can turn to Rhode Island Home Care Assistance for the help they need. We provide high-quality live-in and respite care as well as comprehensive Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care. To learn about our premier in-home care options, give us a call at (401) 284-0979 today.