When the time comes to help an aging relative, most family members are happy to do so. The caregiving responsibilities often begin with a few tasks here and there. With time, however, the elderly adult often develops more serious physical limitations, requiring more assistance. As the family caregiver is spread thin on time, energy and patience, they quickly become overstressed.
Fortunately, there are several things that family caregivers can do to ensure their aging relative has the best care without jeopardizing their own health and wellness.
When Seniors Need Help
Elderly adults often battle with a number of physical challenges from surgeries, illnesses, injuries, and general age-related decline. Specifically, common conditions like glaucoma, fibromyalgia, arthritis, diabetes, chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder, Parkinson’s disease, and a stroke can severely limit an aging adult’s ability to take care of themselves.
When once-independent aging adults need assistance, they usually turn to family members. Often, they need help with meals, cleaning the house, getting to appointments, and avoiding boredom. These family caregivers are usually not trained in senior care and are trying to balance the demands of their own lives. In no time at all, family caregivers are frustrated, tired and extremely overstressed.
Dangers of Too Much Stress
Medical experts agree that chronic stress can be dangerous for family caregivers, affecting both physical and mental health. There are plenty of negative effects that too much stress brings to the body, including high blood pressure, headaches, digestive issues, insomnia, anxiety and depression. Family caregivers need to focus on self-care and work out some kind of balance, so they can take care of their loved one but still find time for themselves.
The reason family caregivers become overstressed is they gradually ignore the activities and people that relieve their stress. When a family member’s time is spent caring for an aging adult, they avoid things like exercise, eating healthy, socializing with friends, enjoying hobbies, focusing on work, and even having some quiet time for themselves. These natural methods of coping with stress are often absent when caring for an elderly adult.
Home Care Providers Can Help
If family caregivers become overstressed, they need to know that there are solutions out there. Home care providers are professionals with experience in working with aging adults. They can step in and assist in all kinds of ways, from helping in the morning with dressing and grooming to light housekeeping, laundry and meal plans. Home care providers give family caregivers the chance to get away from their caregiving duties and focus on their own needs.
When family caregivers get some respite from home care providers, it goes a long way toward easing the stress and giving them peace of mind, knowing that a caring professional is looking out for their aging relative. Hiring a home care provider is one of the best ways for family caregivers to stay away from being overstressed.
When you are in need of care for a senior loved one, consider caregivers provided by Golden Heart Senior Care. We have offices nationwide. For more information, call us today at (800) 601-2792.