Most caregivers take on the job willingly out of love for their family members, but the job comes with its share of frustrations and daily stress. The following tips can help you prevent caregiver burnout.
1. Create a Routine
Adding structure to the day can be beneficial for you and your senior loved one. A routine can help you regain control over your time and provide your loved one with a sense of security. If your loved one has dementia, make sure to take into consideration the times of day when he or she is cooperative or likely to experience sundowning or other issues.
If providing care for your loved one has become challenging and you need assistance, consider hiring a professional caregiver. Home care experts are available to provide high-quality care to seniors on an as-needed basis. From assistance with mobility and exercise to providing transportation to the doctor’s office and social events, there are a variety of ways professional caregivers can help your aging loved one continue to live independently.
2. Make Sleep a Priority
Chronic sleep deprivation can take a toll, both physically and mentally. If your loved one has an erratic sleep schedule or requires care throughout the night, consider contacting a home care agency or arranging for a friend, family member, or professional caregiver to care for your loved one so you can get at least seven hours of uninterrupted sleep.
Whether you need respite from your caregiving duties or your aging loved one needs live-in care, Rhode Island Home Care Assistance can meet your family’s care needs. Our dedicated caregivers are available around the clock to provide transportation to doctor’s appointments, ensure seniors take their prescribed medications, and help with a variety of tasks in and outside the home.
3. Allow Yourself a Break
Taking time to relax and recharge is one of the best things you can do for your loved one. You can go for a walk, take a long bath, or meditate to ease frustrations. Whether it’s for a few hours a week or several days to take a short vacation, family caregivers should take advantage of respite care services available through home care agencies.
4. Join a Support Group
Caregivers who are in similar situations can offer advice to help you manage the challenges of caring for your loved one. Local home care agencies, senior organizations, hospitals, and even your healthcare provider may have a list of support groups available in your area. You can also check out online forums and communities.
5. Think Twice before Giving Up Your Job
Under the Family and Medical Leave Act, most companies must provide up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave each year to care for an immediate family member who is seriously ill. Depending on your circumstances, your employer may allow you to telecommute or work flexible hours, which may enable you to work and care for your loved one. This can prevent additional stress caused by a loss of income and keep you in contact with the outside world.
6. Delegate Tasks to Family Members
Consider making a list of all the tasks that need to be completed on a daily and weekly basis, including everything from preparing meals to grocery shopping and helping your loved one with personal care. Carefully evaluate which tasks are important for you to do personally and which ones can be delegated to other family members.
7. Ask for Help
There’s a good chance coworkers, neighbors, and acquaintances from church are willing to help with certain tasks, but they may be reluctant to say anything. Don’t be afraid to say yes if they offer help.
It’s natural to want to be your loved one’s primary source of care, but to protect yourself from burnout, you may need additional help. If you’re the primary family caregiver for an elderly loved one and need additional assistance providing high-quality at-home care, Rhode Island Home Care Assistance can help. We are a leading home care agency committed to changing the way seniors age. Rely on the professionals at Home Care Assistance to provide high-quality compassionate care for your loved one. Give us a call today at (401) 284-0979 to learn about our flexible in-home care plans.