How to Deal With the Stress of Care Giving

No matter how loving, and close, your relationship is with your elderly family member, care giving can be difficult, and stressful. Statistics show that most often when the elderly are being cared for in the home, they are being cared for by family members.

Caregivers are frustrated, frantic and frazzled

This is an interesting dynamic as many times parents; find themselves in a role reversal with their adult children. This can cause stress, frustration and even panic, as both the caregiver and the senior, may struggle to define new roles, within the relationship. This can be further heightened, if your elderly loved one is dealing with illness, injury, or has limited mobility, due to the natural processes of aging. It becomes crucial for caregivers to understand that they need to find ways to deal with the stresses of care giving, in positive and proactive ways. Here are some tips about how to deal with the stress of care giving-

  • Knowledge is key to dealing with problems-One of the major stresses for caregivers is not knowing how to deal with problems, and concerns that arise while giving care for their elderly loved one. At they understand this frustration. They have created the world’s largest caregiver resource library to help caregivers with this problem. You can simply click on to find over 1000 caregiver resources. This is where you will find what you need in one, convenient, easy to find place. Resources in the library include: non-profits, government and healthcare organizations, home care services, helpful care giving products, information on finances and legal aspects of care. The resources that are available range from local, to national, and include many helpful videos. The entire library is easily searchable by key word or phrase.
  • Recognize the signs of stress-Whether you are a part-time, or a full-time, live in, caregiver you can fall victim to the stress of care giving. It is important to realize that this stress, can grow exponentially, and cause serious problems if left untreated. Many of the horror stories about mistreatment of the elderly have resulted from the stress of care giving. Knowing what your limitations are, and dealing with the accompanying stress, can help you fulfill your role as a caregiver. If you need to consult with your doctor about the stress you are feeling, and possible solutions.
    Consider respite care, to give you a temporary break
  • Do not be ashamed to use respite care-Many caregivers fall into the trap, of feeling like they are the only one, who can care for their loved one. While this may be noble, it can lead to serious stress. You must keep in mind that even if you are the only family member, there are qualified, and licensed, respite care services that can care for your loved one, in a caring, and dignified way. Just be sure to check credentials, and ask for references, before hiring anyone. You should take regular breaks, and then you can return to care for your loved one, with more energy and enthusiasm.
  • Take care of yourself-Care giving while being rewarding, is also demanding and sometimes difficult work. Caring for yourself goes beyond taking occasional breaks. Most caregivers have competing demands of family, job, outside interest and the care giving duties of an elderly family member. You must take time to balance your life as best you can, and understand that you cannot be all things to all people. You must set realistic goals and expectations, establish your limits and do not be afraid to involve other people in the care of your loved one. Taking care of your own health is also crucial. The next time you are thinking of skipping that doctors’ appointment, ask yourself, “Who will take care of my loved one, if I become sick?”

Founder of The CareGiver Partnership
About The CareGiver Partnership. The CareGiver Partnership helps caregivers and their loved ones with answers to their caregiving questions, including information about home health care products and supplies, from our Wisconsin-based team of Product Specialists who are all current or former caregivers. The company’s Web site provides the largest online library of resources on subjects most important to caregivers — from arthritis to assisted living, and Parkinson’s to prostate cancer — as well as access to more than 3,000 home care products for incontinence, skin care, mobility, home safety and daily living aids. The CareGiver Partnership was founded in 2004 by Lynn Wilson of Neenah, Wisc. Visit to learn more or call 1-800-985-1353.


Medicare Tips said...

I do believe that care giving to be effective should always have tender love and care (TLC). Because it is not just the physical that needs caring but ones emotional state and ones psychological state as well, which is why nursing, just like care giving, is more of a calling than a job.

CareGiver Partnership said...

We couldn't agree more. Our motto which is posted in our office is "Caregiving is caring about someone, not just for them." Thank you for your comment.

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