Family Caregivers Need Care Too

Family Caregivers Need Care Too

It is no easy task to give of your time, talents, and energy to fully take care of your elderly parents. There is much sacrifice on the part of caregivers to help ensure the best quality of life and care for those who are growing older. When it feels like the burden of taking care of senior parents is too much, finding the time to take care of yourself is vital to help you continue on this caregiving journey. You are giving so much of yourself that it can be easy to forget that you need to take care of yourself. When you take the time to care for yourself, you will be more adequately prepared for the care of others, and you are better able to optimize the care that you give.

Managing the Stress of Caregiving

A big key to managing your stress while caregiving is to not wait until you are completely stressed out and overwhelmed. Identify the stress triggers in your life that could cause total exhaustion and being completely overwhelmed and try to counteract that before it becomes too much. Watch yourself and make sure you are getting enough sleep, that you are eating healthy, getting exercise and taking some time for yourself during the day. You also need to keep in mind what is and is not in your control. You are the only person who is in complete control of yourself. If there is something that you can change about yourself or your situation then do it! And if you can not control it, then you need to be willing to let it go. Having stress relievers built into your daily routine is something that can prove to be really beneficial as well. Stress relievers such as taking time with a friend, engaging in hobby activities, or exercising are all examples of stress reducers that could aid in your own self-care. 

How Can I Take Time for Myself?

At this point you may be thinking, if I’m the primary caretaker of my elderly parents, how am I supposed to find the time to take care of myself? A break and rest for yourself is an important priority and should be taken seriously so that you can do your best in the caregiver role. See if there are any friends that could come and help with your older parents while you take some time away. If that is not an option, there are private in-home care groups that specialize in the care of individuals who still live at home. This service can help the primary caregiver get some needed time away for self-care while their loved one is completely taken care of. The different social interactions that your senior parent can get during this time can prove to be different and valuable for them as well.

You Are Not Being Selfish

A truly important job as a caregiver is taking care of yourself. This is the way you can be the most productive and efficient at this important task. You are not being selfish by taking time to address your needs – by doing this, you will be better at your caregiver role. You do not have to feel guilty about taking time off and the caregivers at Pocatello in-home care can help to make that a reality to aid in your self-care. Hopefully, with a long-term self-care plan, it can provide longevity to your role as a caregiver to your elderly parents. This will also help both you and those you care for be the happiest they can be during this time of life. 

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