Caregiver fatigue, also known as caregiver burnout, is a serious concern for those who care for sick or aging loved ones. The stress of caring for another person can lead to physical, mental, and emotional exhaustion. This is a concern for the mental health of the caregiver as well as the safety and wellbeing of the person being cared for. The hallmark symptoms of caregiver burnout is a shift in attitude from patient and compassionate to negative, unconcerned, and full of resentment. Many caregivers hide or ignore these symptoms because they feel guilty. Here, we would like to discuss some of the things that you can do to help prevent caregiver fatigue and strengthen the relationship between you and your sick or aging loved one.
Whether you are a parent, a caregiver, or a friend, self-care is critical to being the best partner in any relationship! If you do not take care of yourself, you will have nothing left to give to those you attempt to care for. Self-care is not selfish and it does not take away from the care you provide to those you love. Self-care helps you to maintain good mental and emotional health and allows you to “recharge,” so to speak so that you can be present and give better quality care to those you love. If you do not practice self-care and take some time for yourself, you are at a higher risk of becoming depressed, withdrawn, and resent those you are caring for which will have a negative impact on your care and your relationship. So, self-care is one of the most selfless things you can do when caring for another person! Self-care is different for everyone and for you can be getting to the gym once a day, enjoying your coffee while it is still hot, or weekly date night with your significant other. Whatever it means to you, take the time to care for yourself so that you can be a better caregiver.
Talk to Someone You Trust
One of the most important things is confiding in someone you can count on. Whether it is someone you can count on for a sympathetic ear or it is someone you can swap duties with to help ease the stress of care, it is important to be able to discuss your feelings with someone trustworthy. If you have a supportive spouse, simply discussing the details of your day can be enough, and for some, hiring a therapist to deal with grief and learn coping techniques may be necessary.
It is perfectly acceptable, in fact, it’s encouraged, to get some help! If you are a full-time caregiver for a loved one, it can put a huge strain on your life. From compromising your work and family schedule to adding additional financial stress and limiting available time, you will feel the impacts in every part of your life. It is in your and your loved one’s best interest to enlist some help. Not only does hiring a professional ease the burden of the medical unknown, but it can help you get some time for the much-needed self-care! Home health agencies are the perfect resolution, offering respite, part-time, or full-time care to help you and your loved one! Whether you just need a break for an hour or two at a time, full care with some medical procedures, or some part-time care so you can split your time with your sick or aging loved one, and your family or job, home health agencies offer the perfect solution.
If you are the caregiver for your sick or aging loved one, consider enlisting the services of a local home health agency to help. At Angels on Call Homecare, we offer respite and home health care services to Putnam County and the surrounding areas. Our goal is to help patients and their families where it matters most – at home! Contact us for your consultation or to schedule your services today.