Providing long-term care for a loved one is an act of compassion that offers many benefits for everyone involved. However, the stress experienced by caregivers can sometimes lead to health problems if the proper measures aren’t taken to avoid physical and emotional strain. Here are five ways caregiving could be hurting your health along with tips on how to ensure you have the right types of support in place to prevent feeling overburdened.
1. Skipped Medical Exams & Procedures
Caregivers often skip their own medical appointments when their schedules become filled with their aging loved ones’ physical needs. However, yearly exams and dental visits should be at the top of your priority list so you can stay on top of your health concerns before they become serious.
Family caregivers need to care for their own wellbeing. If you’re caring for an aging loved one and are feeling overwhelmed, consider hiring a professional caregiver to provide respite care. Mississauga families who want to prevent burnout can turn to Home Care Assistance. One of our professional caregivers can assist your loved one at home while you take a nap, go to work, run errands, or go on vacation.
2. Neck & Back Strain
When a loved one requires assistance with daily activities, it’s the caregiver who shoulders the majority of the burden when the senior requires lifting. If possible, encourage your loved one to complete movements independently to the best of his or her ability. When lifting is necessary, use the proper techniques or recruit help. Learn more about how an in-home caregiver could provide you and your loved one with help.
Seniors can face a variety of age-related challenges. Though some families choose to take on the caregiving duties, there may come a time when they need a trusted at-home care provider. Families sometimes need respite from their duties so they can focus on their other responsibilities, and some seniors need around-the-clock assistance that their families are not able to provide. Home Care Assistance is here to help.
3. Disrupted Sleep & Fatigue
Sleep disruptions are common among caregivers who may need to manage medications or check on their loved ones throughout the night. However, fatigue lowers the immune system and makes accidents more likely. Try to fit in a nap during the day if possible or have an additional caregiver provide a few hours of respite so you can get some rest after a long night.
4. Emotional Distress
The emotional stress created by caring for loved ones with health concerns is often overlooked by caregivers, who may feel guilty about feelings such as depression and frustration. However, these emotions can contribute to more serious health problems if they’re allowed to go on too long. Try talking to a counsellor or joining a support group that can provide guidance regarding how to handle emotional distress.
5. Neglected Personal Hygiene
After bathing and dressing your loved one, the last thing you may feel like doing is brushing and flossing your teeth. However, keeping up with personal hygiene is an effective way to avoid more serious health problems.
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 Mississauga 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. To create a customized care plan for your loved one, call us at 905-337-1200 today.