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July 2, 2014

Senior Caregivers

Family Caregivers Advised to Seek Help and Not Go It Alone

Being a caregiver for aging parents or other loved ones is an important and demanding responsibility. You want to help your loved ones live as independently as possible in the comfort of their home; however, caregiving requires a great deal of physical, emotional, and mental energy. Attempting to manage all the responsibilities by yourself results in fatigue, stress and poor health. Eventually, these ill effects impact family members, friends, colleagues, and others close to you.

As a caregiver, you should never try to cope with this responsibility alone. By seeking assistance, and giving yourself a break, you create time to tend to your own needs. Not only do you feel more refreshed, but you are also able to provide better care for your loved ones.

Where to Find Support

You can seek help from other family members, volunteers from a community organization, or a professional senior caregiver who works for an in-home care agency.

A professional caregiver serves as your partner and works with you to establish a schedule that meets your and your loved one's requirements. To fit your needs, caregivers can provide as little as a few hours of service a week to full-time, 24-hour care. They can even provide care for a loved one while you are on vacation.

How In-Home Caregivers Help

In-home caregivers help seniors with personal care, light housekeeping, meal preparation and other activities of daily living. They also provide companionship, which enhances a seniors’ emotional and mental health. Together, your senior loved ones and their caregiver can converse, go on walks around the neighborhood, attend church, engage in favorite hobbies, play mentally stimulating games, and engage in many other activities.

How do you choose a caregiver? Look for an in-home care agency that uses a thorough process for screening, conducting background checks, interviewing, hiring, and training caregivers. Also, choose an in-home care provider that strives to match each client with a caregiver who has compatible personality traits and interests. This assures a positive, enriching experience that will promote your loved ones’ quality of life and health.

Don’t feel guilty about asking for help. In the end, you, your senior loved ones, and others you care for will reap the benefits.

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