Birchwood Senior Living is excited to announce that, being in late May 2017, we will be hosting monthly meetings to caregivers and their loved ones who are in need of additional support. For some, caregiving is a tough and isolating experience, but with the encouragement and uplifting support of others who are experiencing similar situations, these types of groups can help ease stress. Support groups are also a great place to seek advice, find out about community resources, learn coping skills and unload frustrations. Please stay-tuned for exact group information (dates/times) within the next few weeks.
Refueling Your Body – Alleviating Caregiver Stress and Burnout
Caring for a loved one with a chronic medical condition can be very rewarding, however, it can also be very exhausting: emotionally, physically, and mentally. It often time sends caregivers on a roller costar ride of emotions, ranging from frustration to sadness, to a feeling of being depleted and overwhelmed. Caregivers face a tremendous amount pressure in making substantial decisions that will impact the overall well-being of their loved one, not too mention an enormous workload of responsibility. These demands will often time lead to exorbitant amounts of stress and burn-out, and when you’re burnt out its tough to do anything, let alone provide quality care to those who are depending on you the most.
As a busy caregiver, independent leisure time seems like a “thing of the past”, however it is extremely vital that you give yourself permission to rest and partake daily in things that fill you with joy. You’ll be a better caregiver because of it! Consider you body like a well refined machine. It will not run to its best potential without the proper maintenance and fuel. Just 15-20 minutes of personal time per day, focused solely on you, will make a world of difference in alleviating and managing your caregiver stress level.
Taking Care of Yourself
In addition the stress and depression, research has indicated that caregivers are at an increased risk of suffering from a number of other health problems. This is why it is extremely important to take a moment in your day to pause and focus on your personal well-being.
Here are just a few tips on ways to refuel:
- Join a support group: Groups such as these provide caregivers the opportunity to express their feelings, celebrate successes, and share their struggles with others who are in similar situations.
- Maintain your personal health: Do not forget about your personal health. Be sure to see your physician on a regular basis for routine check-ups and appointments. It is also important that you are fueling your body with a nutritious and well balance diet.
- Pamper yourself: read a book, light a candle, or just step outside to feel a fresh breeze upon your cheek. Take a moment to be still and just breathe.
- Exercise: Regular exercise is a fantastic way to help boost your energy level, mood, and eliminate fatigue
- Ask for help: Recognizing that you need help takes a lot of courage. Looking into respite care, or having a friend come in and sit with your loved one while you reenergize is perfectly acceptable; you’re not in this alone.
- Preserve your Friendships: Don’t let your friendships fall to the wayside. Friends are a wonderful outlet to help keep you positive and uplifted.
The content in this article is for informational purpose only. It is NOT intended to be used as a substitute to the advice from a medical professional.