How Burnout Can Affect Caregivers
Choosing a senior caregiver can be highly rewarding, for both you and your loved one, but sometimes life can get a little crazy and leave you feeling a little burnt out. With everything you take care of, from balancing a career to helping your kids with their homework, it becomes important to recognize the signs of caregiver burn out and fatigue. This is, essentially, when a caregiver experiences a state of mental, physical, or emotional exhaustion.
At Comfort Keepers Home Care serving Milwaukee, WI, and the surrounding area, we understand the pressure that providing in home care for a senior loved one can put on their family. In order to help raise awareness of caregiver burnout, we have put together a list of early warning signs, as well as ways you can practice self-care to combat them.
Give us a call at (414) 207-6894 to learn more!
What Are The Symptoms Of Burnout?
There are many signs that point to senior caregiver burnout but, two of the most commonly cited early ones are irritability and fatigue. You may also find you’ve been losing sleep despite feeling exhausted or that you’re getting headaches more frequently.
Other signs that you are experiencing burnout could include:
Changes in appetite, weight, or both
Losing control physically or emotionally
Withdrawal from friends, family, and other loved ones
If you start to notice any of these symptoms, it is crucial that you take steps to bring balance back to your life sooner rather than later. Unfortunately, these feelings don’t simply disappear if you ignore them but, learning new healthy coping mechanisms is a fantastic place to start taking action against burnout.
What Are Some Ways I Can Cope With Burnout?
Learning how to cope with burnout as a senior caregiver is one of the most important skills you can learn but, sometimes finding the right method can take time. What works for someone else might not necessarily work for you and that’s okay. For example, some people might find that maintaining an active social life is beneficial and gets them out of the caregiver headspace at the end of the day, while others find exercise helpful for letting go of their frustrations. The key is to stick with it and keep caring for yourself because you deserve it!
Here are a few more ideas to help you get started:
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.
Educate yourself about your loved one’s condition: Learning how to best manage your loved one’s conditions can be immensely helpful in decreasing stress. Some hospitals or local organizations may even offer classes to help you learn. For example, if you care for a senior with Alzheimer’s or dementia, learning how memory works and the way dementia progresses can help you better understand what your loved one is communicating if they’re having difficulty.
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.
What About Respite Care?
Now you know a little more about caregiver burnout and how to cope if you are experiencing it, but what happens when that isn’t enough? That’s when you can call Comfort Keepers Home Care serving Milwaukee, WI, and the surrounding area! We offer flexible respite care plans, along with a variety of other senior care services. Whether you need a few hours a week to take care of errands, doctor appointments, and other important tasks or would like to take a short vacation to recharge your batteries, one of our caregivers will be there for your loved one so that you can be sure they are happy, healthy, and safe in their home
If you’d like to learn more about why you should choose Comfort Keepers Home Care, our full list of care services, or if you’d like more information on burnout and how to avoid it as a senior caregiver, please contact us online anytime or call us at (414) 207-6894. Our agents are available round the clock to answer your questions and schedule your free in home consultation.