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Many of today’s caregivers aren’t health professionals. They’re individuals who balance the responsibilities of other roles–employee, parent, spouse, family member, and/or volunteer. Caregiver burnout is a very real byproduct of caregiving. It is state of physical, mental, and emotional exhaustion. If you’re providing care for a loved one, self-care needs to part of your caregiving plan.What is Respite Care?
Caregiver stress is a serious issue that can have long-lasting negative physical and emotional effects. There are a number of signs which indicate a caregiver may be under strain, such as feeling overwhelmed, exhausted, or constantly worried. These feelings can manifest in ways such as gaining or losing weight, sleeping too much or not enough, becoming easily irritated or angry, as well as losing interest in activities which used to be pleasurable.
Other signs of caregiver stress include feeling sad, having frequent headaches or other physical problems, and abusing alcohol or drugs. It is important for caregivers experiencing any of these symptoms to take steps to manage their stress before it wreaks further havoc on their wellbeing.
Taking care of oneself is the first step in taking care of others.GET ASSISTANCE
If you’re experiencing any Signs of Caregiver Stress, we urge you to pause and make self-care part of your caregiving plan.
1. Accept help. Family members, friends, or a home care agency can step in to assist you and give you a much-needed break. Time for yourself to do errands, exercise or even reconnect with friends can re-energize you.
2. Join a support group. Connecting with people in similar situations can be a great source of comfort, understanding and problem-solving.
3. Make healthy habits part of every day. Aim for clean eating, moderate exercise, and sufficient sleep. Not every day has to be perfect; do the best you can on most days.
4. Talk to your doctor. Don’t hesitate to talk to your doctor about concerns or symptoms you have.
According to a 2020 study by AARP and the National Alliance for Caregiving, “…more than one in five Americans (21.3%) are caregivers, having provided care to an adult or child with special needs at some time in the past 12 months.”
Caregiver burnout can be a difficult, but manageable struggle. If you are feeling overwhelmed or noticing any of the signs mentioned above in yourself or someone you know who is providing care for another person, it’s important to take steps to manage stress and seek help from mental health professionals if needed.CALL INSPIRED CARE SOLUTIONS