CARE FOR THE CAREGIVER
As a caregiver, it is very important that you make sure your own needs are met and that you take care of yourself as well.
- Identify the stressors in your caregiving role. What tasks or behaviors are most frustrating or anxiety-producing? Think through and plan your responses to these stressful situations.
- Access all the information you can about the disease and educate yourself as much as possible about its progression.
- Get adequate rest.
- Try to keep incidents in perspective.
- Write feelings or thoughts in a journal. Writing things down will often help put them into better perspective and will be a way of releasing emotions.
- Set realistic goals regarding what and how much you can do for your loved one.
- Be good to yourself. Give yourself frequent praise and rewards for your patience and endurance. Continue to find ways to have fun.
- Use your sense of humor – it relieves stress and is a positive emotional release for both of you.
- Identify and be willing to use your support system. Avoid isolation. Have someone available to vent.
- If family or friends offer help, accept it.
- Set aside certain days or parts of certain days for yourself, and find a companion or day program for your loved one for that period of time.
- Forgive yourself for not being perfect and stop trying to be perfect. Don’t be hard on yourself when you experience impatience, frustration, sadness or anger.
- Take care of yourself physically and emotionally. Eat well balanced meals, get regular checkups and exercise.
- Find sources for personal satisfaction.
Don’t hesitate to reach out to us for help or advice. One of our nursing case managers will be happy to have a conversation with you to see if we can help in any way. We recognize what a difficult time this is for the care giver and the family.