Don’t Ignore Your Feelings! Caregiver Burnout And How You Can Cope With It
When an elderly loved one decides to receive care within his or her own home, a family member often prefers to act as the primary caregiver. While this situation is usually ideal, situations arise in which a senior caregiver can begin feeling mentally, physically, or emotionally overwhelmed. This is called caregiver burnout.
Did you know at least 20% of adult children are taking care of an older parent and of that 38 % report a “highly stressful” caregiving situation?
At Comfort Keepers Home Care serving Jacksonville, FL, and the surrounding area, we know that you want to provide the best care you can for your loved one so that they can remain in their home rather than “a home”. That’s why we’ve put together a list of the most common symptoms of burnout along with several coping strategies you can try!
Give us a call at (904) 337-6039 to learn more!
How Do I Know If I’m Experiencing Caregiver Burnout?
There are many signs that a senior caregiver is experiencing burnout but, two of the most common are irritability and fatigue.
Other signs that you are experiencing burnout could include:
Getting sick more often
Excessive use of alcohol, medications or sleeping pills
If you begin to notice yourself or a loved one experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important to act quickly to make changes that will help bring your life back into balance. Unfortunately, these feelings aren’t likely to go away if you just ignore them and may even become worse. So, what can you do about it?
Coping Mechanisms For Senior Caregivers
Coping with senior caregiver burnout is a little different for everyone, and it might take a little while to get a routine set up for yourself. While some people find it helpful to visit support groups or attend therapy, others may find that making time to spend time with friends is more of their stress relief style. Don’t feel bad about taking time for yourself, you deserve it!
Here are a few coping mechanisms you might try:
Consider watchdog technology: Comfort Keepers® Home Care has partnered with SafetyChoice® in order to bring the next level of senior security to you and your loved one. We offer medical alert devices, such as necklaces and bracelets, that can alert loved ones in case of a fall or other home accident, several medication management devices, and state of the art home monitoring systems.
Find a healthy way to vent your frustrations: For some, this can be a friend who understands the demands placed on a senior caregiver. Others may find it works better for them to write down their frustrations in a private diary or word document.
Find a hobby: The sky is the limit here, as long as what you choose is a healthy outlet from caregiving. Maybe you like watching reality TV or perhaps you enjoy a challenging sudoku puzzle or are interested in joining a book club, as long as it takes you away from the caregiving mindset for an hour or two.
Is Respite Care An Option?
At Comfort Keepers Home Care serving Jacksonville, FL, and the surrounding area, we know that you love your senior and want to provide the best care for them but, you have to take care of yourself too. While it is true there are many healthy coping mechanisms that you can try, sometimes it just isn’t enough and that’s okay. If you’re still feeling burnt out, it may be time to consider respite care. With respite care from Comfort Keepers, you can take the time you need to recharge your caregiving batteries while feeling secure in the knowledge that your loved one is being cared for by one of our highly trained, compassionate caregivers.
If you’d like to learn more about how you can cope with the stresses of being a senior caregiver in a healthy way, if you’d like to learn more about Comfort Keepers Home Care serving Jacksonville, FL, and our amazing care team, or if you’re ready to schedule your free in home consultation, please contact us online anytime or call us at (904) 337-6039.