It's not easy to care for someone you love who has dementia. The disease takes so much from your family member and from you and other family members. Here are some ideas that can help.
Hand the Reins to Someone Else
As much as it might feel like you're the only one who can take care of your senior, there are other people who can help. Some of those people might be other family members, but you can also benefit greatly from senior care providers. Start learning how to hand over the responsibility to someone else for a little while.
Get Out of the House
While you're handing over those reins, make sure that you get out of the house. It's easier than you think to get so busy with everything that needs doing that you don't even leave when you can. Whether you're leaving for a couple of hours or for an entire weekend, enjoy your time away.
Sleep and Eat
Sleeping and eating are basic self-care and yet they're among the first activities you might start to ignore or shortcut for yourself. You need to properly rest and properly fuel your body and your brain if you expect them to remain functional. When you're doing that, you're going to find everything about caregiving to be just a little bit easier.
See Your Own Doctor When You Don't Feel Well
Another way that you might neglect your own self-care is through avoiding trips to your own doctor. It's not uncommon at all for family caregivers to try to "soldier through" minor illnesses or to neglect taking care of chronic health issues. That can lead to bigger issues, though, so it's important to prioritize your own health.
Aim for More Good Days than Bad Days
Very often the goal for caregivers is to have every day go as perfectly as possible, but that's not realistic, especially when you're caring for someone who has dementia. Your goal might need adjusting so that you celebrate the good days, but don't beat yourself up over the not-as-good days. Aim for a higher percentage of good days rather than a solid 100 percent good days.
Being a caregiver to an elderly family member who has dementia is not an easy situation, especially in the later stages. Taking care of yourself is going to help you to be in the right place mentally, emotionally, and physically to be able to continue taking care of your senior.
IF YOU OR AN AGING LOVED ONE ARE CONSIDERING HIRING CAREGIVERS IN OLD TOWN, IL, PLEASE CONTACT THE CARING STAFF AT BRIGHTSTAR CARE CHICAGO. CALL TODAY: 312.382.8888.