Avoiding Caregiver Burnout

How to avoid caregiver burnout
RECOGNIZE THE SIGNS OF STRESS. If you are experiencing irritability, feelings of resentment, loss of sleep, increased susceptibility to colds and flu, or if you feel guilty about taking time for yourself, then chances are that you need to re-evaluate your situation.
ACKNOWLEDGE AND ACCEPT THE PRESSURE YOU FEEL It’s normal and healthy reaction to be upset that your loved one is ill and recognize that it takes a toll on you.. Reach out to your own support network, keep a journal to help you cope, seek professional and spiritual advice if you’re overwhelmed.
TAKE A BREAK. In The Fearless Caregiver: How to Get the Best Care for Your Loved One and Still Have a Life of Your Own, author Gary Berg establishes some ground rules for caregivers. At the top of the list: time away, meaning you should participate in activities that don’t include the person you’re caring for. You need time for yourself in order to take care of others. Exercise, socialize, stay involved in activities you enjoy. It is good for your physical and mental well being.
ASK FOR HELP. Often people want to lend a hand, but they don’t know how. Ask them to do specific tasks. Tell a friend you could really use a home-cooked dinner on Wednesday, or have a neighbor pick up your family member’s medication from the drugstore.
TRY RESPITE CARE. Hiring someone to help can reduce the burden on the regular caregiver. It doesn’t have to be expensive — respite care is when someone comes to give you a few hours off. Your Own Home Care customizes the care they provide to suit your specific needs.
TAKE PRIDE IN WHAT YOU ARE DOING. You are providing love and support for someone which is not always and easy task. Take care of yourself, and you will be better equipped to give your family member the loving care they need.
Source: guideposts.com
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