When you are a caretaker for an older adult, you give physical or emotional care and support. Having someone rely on you in many aspects of life can be stressful and draining. Unfortunately, caretakers often lack adequate support for themselves and can experience severe burnout. However, there are ways to avoid burnout and maintain your peace of mind while caring for another individual.
What Are the Signs of Caregiver Burnout?
To avoid caregiver burnout, it’s essential to know the symptoms. Because if you start burning out, you must put on the brakes quickly and slow down. To be an effective caregiver, taking care of yourself is paramount.
Let’s identify the signs of caregiver burnout:
- Weight changes
- Physical and emotional exhaustion
- Feeling hopeless
- Lack of energy/fatigue
- Oversleeping or not sleeping enough
- Becoming irritable
- Mood swings
- Becoming sick more often
It can be challenging for full-time caregivers to carve out time for themselves. “Me-time” is often understood as selfish, especially when you have other people relying on you. When possible, try to wake up 15 minutes earlier each day, and take 15 minutes for yourself before you go to bed. That 30 minutes per day can be a lifesaver.
Whether you like to read, exercise, tend to your plants, or relax while listening to music, that small space of time to yourself can have an incredible impact on your overall well being.
Steps To Take
If you act as a full time caretaker, you’re probably familiar with the burnout phase. Nothing prepares you for this, and it’s taxing. These few steps can help you learn to support yourself:
- First, take a few breaths.
- Allow yourself some me-time daily. Set aside a little time each day just for you.
- Do not isolate yourself.
- Consider seeing a therapist. Mental health care is essential.
- Make sure that you are regularly eating. Do not skip meals.
- Talk it out. Keep in touch with your friends and family.
We all need help sometimes. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by your caretaking responsibilities, know that there is help available. At Victory Home Care, we offer a variety of services to help with the caring of your loved one. Our respite care in Chester County, PA gives caretakers a few hours a day to spend tending to themselves and other responsibilities. We also offer comprehensive home care in Delaware County, PA to help take some of the burden off of your shoulders. Our services are covered by most major insurance companies and Medicaid.
Give your loved one the very best care at Victory Home Care Agency.