Being a caregiver for someone you love is the most honest and pure act of kindness there is. However, it is often a challenge and can also be stressful. It is important to know that feeling this way is okay, and there are many steps you can take to make the best of the situation.
When your loved one has Alzheimer's, cancer, dementia, or any other common condition, caregiving requires special skills to ensure safety and healthy progress. Seeing them lose their abilities is painful and taxing; however, you all can make the best out of this unfortunate situation with the proper care, attitude, and support system.
Here are some tips that will help make your caregiving experience better:
It is a good idea to research all the information about your loved one's condition and the best treatment options that are available. Besides getting all your information online, meet with their doctors and ask any questions you might have. Use your research and their medical professionals to understand how to treat them based on their condition since this can get complicated.
For example, if your loved one has dementia or Alzheimer's, they might repeat themselves, questions they ask, or the stories they tell frequently. This is because they genuinely don't remember the answer, and it's important to be understanding and calm when this happens. Staying informed on what to expect from the illness can help set expectations for you as a caregiver.
Connect with Others
Just like you, there are others in similar situations with tons of questions. Seek support from groups in your community or online. Feel free to reach out to any caregivers you know and remember that you are not alone. There is a vast community out there ready to help you and guide you in this journey.
It Is Okay to Get Frustrated
Even though you are helping from the heart, it is okay sometimes to feel frustrated and angry. It is vital to recognize what causes these feelings and try and step away when the situation is escalating. Take a deep breath, do some exercise, or ask for help.
A fellow caregiver can advise you on how they handle similar situations and help you communicate better with the person you are caring for. Always remember why you are doing this in the first place and use that reminder to help adjust your emotions.
It is not required to always stay on schedule. Finding activities to do together can help both a caregiver and their patient make happy memories in the midst of struggle. Try to get them started on a hobby you also enjoy, go on trips, and connect with others.
Take Care of Yourself
Probably the most essential tip for all caregivers is to take care of themselves. It may be challenging to find alone time, but you cannot care for others if you are not taking care of yourself. Being okay physically, mentally, and emotionally reflects in all your interactions as well as your actions in daily life.
Make time to sleep, maintain a healthy diet, exercise, socialize, or just lay down to rest. If you feel overwhelmed with your responsibilities or start feeling resentment or burnout, talk to a professional and consider getting extra help. Accepting help when you need it will allow you, and the person you are caring for, maintain a higher quality of life.
Accept Help and Suggestions
If anyone from your support system is offering help, take it! They care about your loved one as much as you do. And, do not be afraid to ask for help either. Use this time to focus on yourself.
Learn to recognize when your loved one needs a specialized kind of care you cannot provide. There are many options available from professionals that are here to help. Consider adult day care, in-home care, board care, assisted living, skilled nursing care, or senior transit.
Why Choose Deano's for Your Senior Transit Needs?
We've made it our mission to deliver the first-class service to our senior clients with on-time arrival and short wait times for returns. Deano's Senior Transit offers the cleanest vehicles in the area and uses the latest technology to the fullest extent. To request a ride, contact us or give us a call today to get started!