No one would deny that being a family caregiver is one of the most stressful jobs, often, with little benefit. Caregivers are some of the most selfless people around, which usually means that they are putting everyone else before themselves and their own health. Daily exhaustion can turn into chronic fatigue, and caregivers can begin to experience more severe health conditions if they don’t address the caregiver burnout that often comes with the constant care of another.
Everyone eventually has a breaking point, but caregivers can be guilty of not paying attention to their own needs. When chronic stress and exhaustion becomes the norm, it can be hard for a caregiver to distinguish a bad moment from complete burnout. Sustained stress can be extremely harmful to the body, so it’s important that caregivers ensure not only their physical health but also their mental and emotional health is a priority in their lives. You can contact a kehonomi for osteopathy massage physiotherapy.
Are you suffering from Caregiver Burnout?
Signs of caregiver burnout can be very similar to the symptoms of depression. Extreme weight loss or gain, a new substance abuse problem, or an inability to sleep can indicate that you are suffering emotionally and mentally from high-stress. Additionally, if you notice that your personal relationships, social life, and/or work life is suffering because you are often exhausted, unable to focus, or just not yourself, these could all be signs of caregiver burnout. Perhaps one of the strongest signs that you need to make changes in your life is if you are no longer experiencing pleasure and often feel sad or angry, which can be a sign of depression.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms for an extended period, you may be experiencing burnout, and it may be time to get help and/or make some changes in your life.
Ways to Combat Caregiver Burnout
Being fatigued can impact all areas of your life, so it’s important that you do your best not to let stress get the best of you. After all, you can’t be a good caregiver to someone else if you aren’t taking care of yourself first.
Here are five things you can do to prevent or relieve burnout and get back on track.
- Make Time for Exercise
Even ten minutes a day can make a big change, but just a little bit more will be better. Exercise can be as simple as a few push-ups, sit-ups, and squats around the house or even a quick walk around the block. You get extra bonus points for calling a friend to take a walk with you!
- Create Time for a Social Life
Speaking of friends, don’t forget about them in the daily stress of caregiving. If your loved one is sleeping, call up a friend for a good laugh or to catch up on happier things in life. Just the act of hearing a friend’s voice and knowing they are there for you can lift your spirits!
- Schedule “Me” Time
“Me” time can be one of the hardest things for caregivers to plan, but it is the most important. It’s easy to stop doing the things you love when you become responsible for someone else’s well-being, but you shouldn’t! Make sure you are doing at least one thing a week that brings you joy. This can mean a weekly pedicure, massage, yoga class, or movie. It can be whatever you want, but make sure it makes you feel good. Having something to look forward to can give you a break from worrying about your loved one all the time.
- Seek Professional Help
Listen to your body and know when it has had enough. If you feel physically ill, see a doctor and make sure that your health is always a priority. In the same way, if you feel as though you are depressed or need counseling to deal with the emotional stress of caregiving, allow yourself to take the first step in seeking professional care. There is no shame in doing what is best for you.
- Hire Help
It can be hard for caregivers to ask for help from anyone, and it may be even more difficult for them to find someone they trust to take care of their loved one. However, it may be for the best if you hire a reputable, dependable caregiving service to help you around the home. These services range anywhere from simple companion care to full medical care; and from part-time to around the clock. Hiring a professional caregiver could give you the opportunity to do some of those things that make you happy, even if it means just taking an afternoon nap.
At 24/7 Nursing Care, we are here for you. We place qualified caregivers, companions, and nurses who provide top-notch care into the homes of our clients. There is peace-of-mind knowing that your loved one is safe at home with someone who can provide the best care. If you are a family caregiver who is experiencing caregiver burnout, contact us today. We are happy to help you! 855-Nurse44
A Caregiver’s Guide to Coping with Stress and Burnout. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.caring.com/caregivers/burnout