Why Is It Important To Talk About Caregiver Burnout?
Being a senior caregiver for your loved one can be hard work, especially when you may be trying to balance a career, kids of your own, or even just your own housework on top, and when all of these stresses add up they can result in caregiver burnout or fatigue. What does that mean? Well, in short, it is a state of physical, mental, and emotional exhaustion.
At Comfort Keepers Home Care serving Huntington Beach, CA, and the surrounding area we understand that there are only so many hours in a day and that you want to care for your loved one as best as you can, so we’ve put together a list of burnout signs and coping mechanisms to help you or your loved ones avoid feeling burned out.
Give us a call at (714) 646-6091 to learn more!
What Does Caregiver Burnout Feel Like?
The most common early signs of senior caregiver burnout are fatigue and irritability. You may begin to feel angry or stressed if your caregiving duties are preventing you from working full time.
Other signs that you are experiencing burnout could include:
Feelings of wanting to hurt yourself or the person for whom you are caring
Losing control physically or emotionally
These feelings are frustrating, but they will only get worse if you ignore them and don’t communicate with your loved one or physician. There is no reason to suffer in silence.
How Can I Cope With Caregiver Burnout?
While there are many ways to cope with feelings of burnout as a senior caregiver, not all of them will be a perfect fit for you. You might find that journaling provides a healthy way for you to vent any frustrations that you don’t feel comfortable expressing to your friends or family members, while someone else might find that letting their employer know about their caregiving responsibilities along with learning about any potential caregiver related programs their company is involved in can help decrease their stresses.
Here are a few more ideas to help you get started:
Seek professional guidance and/or support groups: While it can sometimes be hard to find the time to sit down and speak with a therapist or counselor, it can be incredibly helpful for many people. Support groups may also be available in your area, you can try checking with local hospitals or places of worship for meeting dates and times.
Listen to your body: If your body is tired, let yourself rest. It may be a good idea to take a vacation or “staycation” if you can. Even a night away from your responsibilities can do wonders for you!
Schedule time for your health: While caregivers may spend a lot of time in doctor’s offices, it is often to accompany the senior they care for rather than for their own appointments. One way to combat this is by making your own appointments for regular exams, flu shots, dental visits, and the like at the same time you arrange a loved one’s.
When Should I Seek Outside Help?
Now that you’ve learned more about what exactly caregiver burnout is, how to avoid it, and a few healthy coping mechanisms, you may be wondering what you can do if you still need a little more time for yourself. This is where your friendly specialists from Comfort Keepers Home Care serving Huntington Beach, CA, and the surrounding area can step in! We offer flexible respite care plans, that can also include our other core services such as light housekeeping or Alzheimer’s and dementia care, so that you can have some much deserved “me time”, without worrying about whether your loved one is safe in their home.
If you’d like to learn more about how to avoid burnout as a senior caregiver, all of our available senior care services, or if you’re ready to schedule your free in home consultation, please contact us online anytime or call us at (714) 646-6091. Our operators are available 24/7 to answer any questions you have.