Caring for an aging loved one can be a rewarding experience. However, tasks such as meal preparation and bathing duties can become increasingly stressful. If the stress continues to build up over time, it could lead to caregiver burnout. Here are some common causes of caregiver burnout and how to prevent each one.
1. Self-Care Neglect
Many caregivers manage their caregiving duties along with running another household or holding down a full-time job, which leaves them little time for taking care of their own needs. Little sleep, lack of exercise, and a poor diet can lead to both emotional and physical challenges. Make sure you consume enough calories and follow a healthy diet for your body and mind to function at its peak. Getting regular exercise and adequate sleep are both important for the body to fully relax and make the necessary repairs.
If you are the primary family caregiver for an elderly loved one and need additional assistance providing high-quality home care, Clarksville Home Care Assistance can help. We are a leading home care agency committed to changing the way seniors age.
2. Financial Concerns
Seniors who need continual medical care along with other living expenses may require some financial support and special care from their family caregivers. Often, caregivers cut their work hours or other sources of income to care for their aging loved ones, which can cause them to have financial strain as well. If providing more financial support to your loved one is necessary, there are many federal and state programs available that can ease your financial burden.
3. Lack of Support
Most caregivers spend their days supporting their aging loved ones, but they often lack a support team for themselves. Caregivers without assistance often find themselves withdrawing from friends and family and becoming less social, which exacerbates burnout. Reach out to friends and family for help with a simple phone call or a text.
Families who need help caring for a senior loved one can turn to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of Clarksville home care. Services available in our customizable care plans include meal prep, mental and social stimulation, assistance with personal hygiene tasks, and much more.
4. Role Reversal
Caring for an aging loved one who once was your provider may become psychologically and emotionally draining when he or she is now vulnerable and in need of help. It may become a situation where you and your loved one experience negative emotions, which can raise the risk of stress. Talk to other caregivers about how to manage your tasks and stress related to the possible shifting roles.
5. Too Many Tasks
Many caregivers take on more responsibilities than they can handle, and they try to do everything themselves when caring for a loved one, which can lead to feeling exhausted and overwhelmed. When caregiver burnout is a result of overwork, scale back your tasks and delegate more responsibilities to your family members. Hold a family meeting to explain the extent of your responsibilities to make your family aware of everything you do and to enlist more help moving forward.
6. Setting Impractical Expectations
When becoming a caregiver, your goals might include things such as boosting your loved one’s overall health. While providing the proper nutrition and care may greatly benefit and enhance your loved one’s quality of life, you might not be able to control all the things that affect his or her wellbeing. Give yourself a break and focus on all the positive things you’re able to do for your loved one instead of the things you can’t control.
Family caregivers need to care for their own wellbeing. If you are caring for an aging loved one and are feeling overwhelmed, consider hiring a professional caregiver to provide respite care. Clarksville families who want to avoid burnout can turn to Home Care Assistance. One of our professional caregivers can assist your loved one at home while you take a nap, go to work, run errands, or go on vacation. Call us at (931) 218-2781 to talk to our Care Managers about the various ways a professional caregiver can benefit your loved one.