If you are the primary caregiver for a relative recovering from an illness or injury, you know that it can be a full-time job. These responsibilities, combined with your other day-to-day duties to household and family, can be overwhelming. Here are some suggestions to help you through this challenging period:
- Communicate with doctors. Always let your loved one’s doctor know what additional medications, supplements, or other therapies you have integrated into their care. Your doctor should be kept informed of any changes. When speaking with a doctor about care plans, ensure that you understand test results and medication administration before you leave their office.
- Practice self-care. Your health and wellness should be top of mind, even and especially when you are caring for others. If you are not at your best, it can make it much more difficult to provide the care that your loved one needs. Join a local support group, schedule time with friends, and be mindful of your own needs.
- Watch for signs of depression. Depression can sneak up on us. Watch for fatigue, anxiety, emotional outbursts, irritability, and loss of appetite, which all may be signs of depression. If you find yourself losing interest in things which previously brought you joy, or start having trouble getting out of bed in the morning, talk to your doctor.
- Stay organized. Ensure that you stay on top of your loved one’s medical information. Update medication lists when new medicines are added or removed from the schedule. Keep emergency contact numbers updated as well, and ensure that all of these records are kept together in a bright folder or other easy-to-identify package.
- Accept help. In general, friends and family want to help. Reach out for financial assistance or an extra pair of helping hands. Also remember that there are home healthcare agencies like Graceworks at Home that you can call on when you need a break. Home healthcare providers specialize in caring for those who are unable to leave their homes, or those who are looking to cut costs by continuing rehabilitation or recovery therapies at home instead of in a hospital setting.
Are you a caregiver interested in exploring how home-based healthcare can help you better support your loved one? Discover more about your options by visiting Graceworks at Home.