Providing care to a senior loved one can be stressful, especially if you’re the sole caregiver. Fortunately, there are things you can do to prevent excessive stress from negatively affecting your ability to take care of your loved one. Here are some ways to stave off caregiver burnout so you can reduce stress and remain happy and healthy.
Consume Proper Nutrition
If you don’t eat right, you may be less effective in your role as a caregiver. Nutritional deficiencies can cause fatigue, depression, anxiety, and insomnia. Make sure your meal plans include foods high in vitamin C, B vitamins, protein, fiber, magnesium, and calcium. These nutrients provide energy and boost immune function so you’re more resistant to infections.
Family caregivers don’t have to risk their own wellbeing to make sure their loved ones continue to receive high-quality care. Caring for a senior loved one can be rewarding, but it can also be overwhelming for family caregivers who have other responsibilities they need to focus on. For these families, the perfect solution is respite care. Amarillo families rely on our caregivers whenever they need time to rest, work, run errands, and even go on vacation.
Exercise promotes relaxation and feelings of wellbeing. Also, if you have difficulty sleeping at night because of burnout or anxiety, exercising early in the day may promote evening drowsiness so you can enjoy hours of high-quality sleep. When you’re well rested, you’re less likely to experience the effects of caregiver burnout.
Ask for Help
When other people pitch in, caregiver stress can be greatly reduced. Help from your family members also allows you to schedule time for yourself to get your own chores done, take a brief vacation, or simply spend a few hours with good friends. When you enjoy time to yourself, you may have a better attitude about caregiving.
If you’re beginning to feel overwhelmed by your caregiving responsibilities, remember you don’t have to manage everything all on your own. 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 Amarillo senior 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.
Get a Pet
Exposure to pets may diminish stress and lower your risk for caregiver burnout. If you’re experiencing caregiver burnout, getting a dog or cat may be just what you need to boost your mood. Your loved one may also benefit from getting a pet. Holding or petting an animal lowers blood pressure, promotes feelings of calm, and enhances mood. If you’re unable to own a pet, visit a local animal shelter or volunteer there for a few hours a month so you can still enjoy the stress-reducing effects of animal companionship.
Seek Professional Assistance
If you cannot shake caregiver burnout despite your best efforts, make an appointment with a mental health professional to work through your situation so you can better care for your loved one. It’s not unusual for caregivers to feel overwhelmed, but fortunately, there are effective strategies your healthcare provider can recommend. While a resolution to your burnout situation may not happen overnight, over time you’ll have the skills you need to become a highly effective caregiver who is resistant to burnout.
For family caregivers who are at risk of burnout, an in-home caregiver can provide a much-needed source of support. When you search for a professional caregiver, you’re looking for someone with experience in senior care who’s compassionate and trustworthy. One of the most challenging tasks of helping an elderly relative age in place safely and comfortably is researching agencies that provide elder care. Amarillo families can turn to Home Care Assistance for reliable, high-quality in-home care for aging adults. We offer 24-hour live-in care for seniors who require extensive assistance, and we also offer respite care for family caregivers who need a break from their caregiving duties. Call one of our friendly Care Managers today at (806) 803-9991 to learn more about our customized care plans.