Family Caregiver Burnout in McKinney, TX
Learn more about avoiding caregiver burnout.
There are few things a person can do that are as selfless and rewarding as caring for a loved one. However, caring for somebody over an extended period of time is exhausting. It does not matter how much you love the person, eventually, long-term care will wear down even the most capable, committed, and selfless of people. The result of becoming worn down, tired, exhausted, fatigued, stressed, and so forth is known as family caregiver burnout.
In its simplest form, family caregiver burnout is caused by allowing life's balance to be thrown off. Caregivers normally start off all right, but as time goes on they forget to exercise, eat right, and do not get enough rest and/or truly restful sleep. Often the senior becomes the primary focus of life and the caregiver's own life gets put on the back burner. This impacts the caregiver's own social contacts, other family members, housework, finances, etc. Add to this the stress of caring for a senior who does not get better over time, and the very nature of the care can become depressing.
The results of family caregiver burnout are serious. Caregivers are more than twice as likely as non-caregivers to have chronic health problems or suffer from depression. The are also significantly more likely to die prematurely. In the short-term, burnout sucks the peace and joy out of life and makes the caregiver question their motives and self-worth.
How to Prevent Caregiver Burnout
The good news is that family caregiver burnout is not mandatory. There are caregivers who successfully care for their senior loved ones and do not fall ill or get depressed. What are their secrets?
Balance. Taking the time to balance your life is the first step in avoiding burnout. While you may not be able to get a full eight hours of sleep every night, you will be able to tell if you are getting tired. When this happens, it is time for a break. In order to take a break and restore balance, successful caregivers know the value of getting help.
Help. Getting help does not mean that you are unable to provide excellent care or that you have let your loved one down. It simply means you are wise enough to know your limits. For family caregivers who ask for help from family members or friends and do not get it or do not get enough to make a difference, professional caregiving support may be needed. Turning to a professional in home care agency for occasional support not only helps caregivers find some rest, but they may also learn some tips and techniques that make the care they do provide more efficient.
Health. Maintaining one's own health is not easy without the stress and pressures of caregiving. Family caregivers must take extra care to find time to exercise, eat right, and keep their own medical and dental appointments. In cases where these items are put off because the senior simply cannot be left alone, family caregivers should look into home respite services. With in-home respite care, professional caregivers will come to the senior's home and provide short-term care while the primary caregiver is away.
Boundaries. Each of us has a breaking point. It is important to know what that is for you. When you reach that point, understand that you have a responsibility to yourself and your senior loved one to stop. This may mean getting help, or it may mean making other adjustments. What is certain, however, is that going beyond boundaries is not healthy for either the senior or their caregiver. The question that helps many caregivers finally say "no" or "enough" is "What happens if I end up in the hospital or worse? Who will care for my senior loved one then?" By respecting your boundaries and giving yourself permission to stop, take a break, or get help, you actually enhance the quality of care and of life for everybody involved.
Comfort Keepers of McKinney, TX is proud to provide care services to seniors in the following communities:
Quality Home Care For Seniors in McKinney, Texas
and the Surrounding Areas
Providing certified in home caregivers that support independent senior living
at home in McKinney, Allen and the surrounding areas in Texas
Contact us today for a free home care services consultation!
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