As a caregiver, you do a lot of great things for your aging relative every day. You might make sure they eat healthy meals, keep their house clean, and see to it that they follow the treatment plan for a medical condition. However, along with all the good things you do as a caregiver, it’s possible you’ve also picked up a few bad habits that are common among caregivers. Below are 3 things you might be doing and should stop.
#1: Stop Expecting Too Much of Yourself
Many caregivers expect to be able to do all caregiver duties perfectly. They also believe they should be able to do everything all by themselves—hold down a job, take the senior to all their appointments, take care of their own children, and maintain their own house while also keeping the older adult’s house clean, too. That’s an awful lot to ask of anyone. Instead of trying to take on too much, ask other people for help. Make a list of the things that the senior needs and determine which items you’re comfortable having someone else do, like cooking meals or doing laundry. When people ask you if you need help, the correct answer is, “Yes!” Then ask them to take care of one of the things on the list. You may be surprised at how much lighter your load can get. If there aren’t people around you who can help, consider contacting a home care agency to hire a provider to assist the older adult a few hours per week.
#2: Stop Hiding Your Caregiver Role
Many caregivers find it hard to tell others about having to take care of an older relative. The reluctance to talk might be because the situation makes them sad or because it makes them uncomfortable. This can be especially true for men who may have been raised to hide their feelings or to be embarrassed by performing tasks that are traditionally done by women. If you haven’t told others that you’re a caregiver, start by telling people who you are close to. Once you’re more comfortable talking about it, be sure to tell your employer as being a caregiver may affect your work life at times, such as when the senior becomes hospitalized or when you need to take off work for an appointment.
#3: Stop Neglecting Your Health
If you’re like many caregivers, you’ve probably stopped doing some of the things that are important to your own good health because you’re busy worrying about your aging relative. For example, you may be getting less sleep because you have so many things to get done. You may also be grabbing quick meals from the local fast food place while you run from one place to the next. And, perhaps you’ve given up the yoga class you once enjoyed because you simply don’t have time. It’s not uncommon for caregivers to find their own health worsening while they are focused on improving the health of a loved one. Taking care of your own health by eating well, exercising, getting enough sleep, and seeing your doctor regularly will allow you to be a more effective caregiver because you’ll feel better and have more energy.
If you or someone you know needs help with a Caregiver in Comstock Park MI, contact Gauthier Family Home Care. We provide quality and affordable homecare services in our community. Call us at (616) 258-2300 for more information.
- Is Your Senior More at Risk of Choking than You Realize? - June 29, 2020
- What Skills Should You Be Looking for When Hiring Home Care for Your Parents? - June 24, 2020
- Four Ways to Tell It’s Time for Senior Care Service - June 16, 2020