Caring for a loved one may be incredibly gratifying, but it also comes with a lot of stress. And, because caring is frequently a long-term endeavor, the emotional toll can build up over time. You may be responsible for years, if not decades, of caregiving. It’s especially depressing if you feel like you’re in over your head, if there’s little hope that your loved member will get well, or if their condition is slowly deteriorating despite your best efforts.
Caregiving stress may have a negative impact on your health, relationships, and mental state, eventually leading to burnout, which is a condition of emotional, mental, and physical fatigue. When you reach that point, you and the person you’re caring for both suffer.
Here are some common signs of caregiver burnout and how you can effectively avoid them.
Warning Signs of Caregiver Burnout
- You often feel anxious, depressed, or easily irritable
- You feel tired and exhausted most of the time
- You often experience headaches, stomachaches, or other physical issues
- You have trouble sleeping
- You notice new or worsening health issues
- You feel that you are not able to concentrate
- You start becoming bitter
- You eat, drink, or smoke more
- You try to neglect responsibilities whenever you can
- You cut back on your leisure and social activities
- You feel that you are nothing if you are not a caregiver
Avoiding Caregiver Burnout
Now that you are able to identify the symptoms of caregiver burnout, here are some tips for you to avoid it before it happens.
- Be open to asking for help: Needing assistance does not imply that you are a poor caregiver. No one can do great things alone. So, be open to asking for help whenever you feel overwhelmed with tasks.
- Allow yourself to relax and take a rest: Instead of being stuck at home all the time, get out of the house as much as possible. Make plans to visit with your friends or allow yourself to be pampered with a massage or a lengthy warm bath in a tub.
- Indulge in self-care: Make sure you look after yourself. Don’t put off seeing your own doctor because you’re too busy. Get plenty of exercise, eat healthily, and sleep well! Remember to make time for yourself too—meditate, pray, or just sip on a cup of coffee by yourself.
- Delegate tasks: Make a list of all of your activities and responsibilities. Check to see whether any of them may be delegated. Perhaps a friend or family can help with errands or laundry. People are frequently willing to assist; take them up on their offer!
- Consider senior living options: Senior living options can help to balance out some of your caregiving responsibilities and free you of some time and stress.
Discovery Village At Twin Creeks
If you wish to find out more about our comprehensive senior living programs, modern apartments and cottages, resort-style amenities, and more, contact Discovery Village At Twin Creeks to schedule a complimentary tour of our campus.