Did you know that the symptoms associated with caregiver burnout are similar to those of stress and depression? Symptoms may include overwhelming fatigue, loss of appetite, neglecting personal well-being, change in behavior and withdrawal from friends, family and prior interests.
Caregivers often feel guilt for spending time on themselves instead of caring for their aging loved one. However, balancing your own needs will benefit both you and your loved one if your goal is to remain the primary caregiver. Here’s our top tips for getting you back to providing excellent care!
- Ask for help. If other family members live nearby, see if they are willing to become more involved and take short shifts with your loved one. That brief time away will provide you a mental break.
- Give yourself permission to take time off. Schedule some “me time” in your calendar and stick to it. You’ve earned the break. Be sure to make arrangements for your loved one’s care during your absence.
- Get organized. Get back on track with simple reminders such as calendars and to-do lists that can help you prioritize important tasks. Take inventory of your loved one’s legal documents and financial information.
- You’re not alone. Join a local caregiver support group and connect with others in your shoes.
- Consider respite care. Whether it’s for a few days or few weeks, respite care offers 24/7 care support by licensed caregivers, allowing you to take some much needed rest or vacation. As a bonus, your loved one can enjoy daily activities and a social community filled with other seniors. Learn more…