Statistics indicate that more than 43 million family members regularly care for their elderly loved ones. According to a report submitted to the National Alliance for Caregiving, more than one-third of all family caregivers complain of having high stress levels. Ongoing stress related to caregiving often results in burnout. However, there are several tactics family members can adopt to reduce stress levels and prevent eventual burnout.
Before becoming a caregiver, learn all you can about the job. Many long-term care facilities and community colleges offer classes that cover a wide range of topics. Read about your loved one’s existing medical conditions and how these disorders progress. Learn about the medications your parent must take and the side effects that may occur. Accompany your loved one to medical appointments to learn about the treatments and possible further interventions.
Caring for a senior loved one can be challenging for families who don’t have expertise or professional training in home care, but this challenge doesn’t have to be faced alone. Family caregivers can turn to Denver Home Care Assistance for the help they need. We provide high-quality live-in and respite care as well as comprehensive Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care.
Offer Help Only When Required
Encourage your loved one to remain as independent as possible. Assistive devices such as grab bars raise the level of safety in the bathroom. Other items include easy-grip eating utensils. Enhance indoor lighting, remove clutter to prevent falls, and place frequently used items within your loved one’s reach. If you notice your parent is having difficulty completing a task, offer assistance.
Living independently is important for seniors who want to maintain a high quality of life. For some, this simply means receiving help with tasks that have become more challenging to manage over time. Even when families have the best intentions, they may not have the time to provide the care their elderly loved ones need and deserve. If your loved one needs help for a few hours a day or a few days a week, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a trusted provider of respite care Denver seniors can depend on.
Establish a Network of Helpers
By taking on too many tasks, many caregivers end up experiencing burnout. Enlist the aid of other family members or friends to run errands, manage finances, or perform household chores, and resist the urge to become too critical of helpmates. Remember they are doing their best to pitch in and may not accomplish tasks in the same way as you. Determine who might take your place in the event of illness, emergencies, or time off.
Learn How to Address Agitation & Other Behaviors
If your loved one has dementia or another mental condition, he or she may act out from time to time. Don’t take the situation personally. Understand that the verbal and nonverbal behaviors are part of the diagnosis. Learn how to communicate compassionately to divert your loved one’s attention and calm the atmosphere. Try to understand the reason for the agitation and come up with a solution.
Invest in Self-Care
To provide your parent with high-quality care, you need to maintain good emotional, mental, and physical health. Eat healthy foods and exercise regularly to stay physically fit. Getting a solid seven to nine hours of sleep each night helps the body and mind recover from the day’s activities.
Join a Support Group
Caregiver support groups are the ideal place to vent frustrations and issues related to the job. Members often offer helpful tips and important information that makes caregiving easier.
If you’re the primary family caregiver for a senior loved one living in Denver, live-in care is available if your loved one’s health has become too difficult to manage without professional expertise. At Home Care Assistance, we take measures to help seniors prevent illness and injury by assisting with exercise and mobility, preparing nutritious meals, helping with bathing and other personal hygiene tasks, and much more. To create a comprehensive in-home care plan for your elderly parent, call us at (720) 443-3371 today.