How Caregivers Can Deal With the Stress Associated With Elder Care
Updated: Oct 6
When assuming the role of caregiver, much mental and physical energy and time will be required. For caregivers, the long days and hard decisions can cause mental, emotional, and even physical strain on our bodies. So often, as caregivers, we forget how important it is to manage the stress associated with caregiving. Here are some tips for managing stress associated with caregiving and elder care:
Get Help When Needed
Like most caregivers, you most likely have several other things to attend to daily. So it is okay to seek and accept help from others, such as friends and family members. For instance, you can ask a friend for an extra hand over the weekend or ask a family member to take your loved one to an appointment. However, you must understand that you can't handle it all alone and be sure to ask for help BEFORE the tasks become overwhelming. Once you are overwhelmed, it may be challenging to think clearly, and you may find yourself resistant to help. This situation will only work against you and not benefit your loved one who depends on you for care.
Seek guidance from a doctor, psychologist, psychiatric nurse practitioner, social worker, or certified geriatric care manager. These professionals are trained to identify potential and actual needs for intervention and can steer you in the right direction.
Set Healthy Goals for Yourself
To adequately care for others, you must endeavor to be healthy yourself. Establishing healthy routines such as diets, exercise, meditation, prayer, and rest is essential to ensure that you're always sound, healthy, and in good condition to care for your loved one. Start your day with gratitude for all the good things in your life, and you start the day in a positive mode. It would be best if you took ME TIME. Time to socialize with a friend or a group may make all the difference. Meet a friend at a local diner and talk over tea or coffee. Listen to your friend's woes and problems. You may walk away feeling relieved about your situation. If you're not healthy, in body and mind, you won't be able to provide the quality of care required. Physical and mental health go hand and hand. Always check with your doctor before starting an exercise routine.
Find Ways to Make Caregiving Easier
Thanks to technology, there are easier ways to get things done, and thanks to the internet, it's also just as easy to find these solutions. Therefore, reading and researching qualified articles on topics that support your situation may be helpful. Seek answers to make elder care more manageable, such as transport services, shopping/food delivery, cleaning, companionship, and appropriate medical attention. So, by seeking alternative methods of completing the necessary tasks for your loved one, you may and should find your stress level reduced.
Connect With People
Community is an important aspect of life; as a caregiver, it is a great idea to connect with other caregivers. You can join a support group or any community of caregivers to encourage, support, and share tips or advice with one another to make the journey easier and more bearable.
Know That You’re Not Alone
As challenging as things seem, you should never forget that you're not alone. A great way to manage stress as a caregiver is to speak with the right professionals, such as a Geriatric Care Manager, to get some advice and much-needed relief from stress, anxiety, and tension.
A Geriatric Care Manager provides various guidance and appropriate interventions to deal with and resolve your dilemma. Let the geriatric care manager do all the work so that all you have to do is spend quality time with your loved one.
Are you looking to find a Geriatric Care Manager or get eldercare support?
Reach out to Advocacy with Compassion and ask for Lisa. This first step will reduce stress and help you and your loved one live more enjoyable and peaceful lives.
Get Help Now.
Lisa Baez-Alessandro, MBA, RN, Aging Life Care Management, Certified Care Manager (CMC) Geriatric Care Manager, Eucharistic Minister
Lisa is the founder and owner of Advocacy with Compassion, LLC
Lisa has held leadership positions in the healthcare industry for over 30 years. In addition, she is a certified geriatric care manager and a seasoned registered nurse for over 30 years. Lisa is a natural-born caretaker with a passion for caring for anyone needing help. As a Certified Geriatric Care Manager, her experience has a wide range of specialties.