The stress associated with providing care for a loved one is frequently a long-term challenge, and the emotional toll can accumulate over time. Your caregiving obligations could last for many years or even decades. It can be especially demoralizing if you believe you are in over your head, if there is no chance your loved one will recover, or if their condition is deteriorating despite your best efforts. Unmanaged caregiver stress can have a negative impact on your physical and mental health as well as relationships, eventually resulting in burnout- a state of emotional, mental, and physical exhaustion. And when that happens, both you and the person you're caring for suffer.
What is Caregiver Stress and Burnout?
A state of physical, emotional, and mental exhaustion known as caregiver burnout can occur and a shift from a caring and upbeat attitude to one that is dismissive and negative may result. In order to effectively provide care, a person cannot be emotionally, mentally, or physically exhausted themself. As a result of the high demands of providing care, caregiver stress syndrome or burnout can occur. It can be challenging for the caregiver to attend to their own needs first. Caregiver burnout can happen if they don't get the support they require or if they try to take on more than they can handle financially or physically.
What Can Cause Caregiver Stress and Burnout?
Caregivers frequently neglect their own emotional, physical, and spiritual health because they are so busy providing care for others. In some cases, the demands on a caregiver's body, mind, and emotions are too great, which can result in fatigue, hopelessness, and ultimately burnout. Here are additional causes of caregiver stress and burnout:
You Feel Like You Lack Control
The inability to effectively plan, manage, and organize the care of their loved one is a major source of frustration for many caregivers.
You Develop Role Confusion
When given the responsibility of caregiving, many people struggle. People may find it challenging to distinguish between their roles as caregivers and those of their partners, lovers, children, friends, or other close relationships.
You Develop Unrealistic Expectations
The health and happiness of the patient are two things that many caregivers hope to contribute to in a positive way. For patients with a progressive illness like Parkinson's or Alzheimer's, this might be unrealistic.
How Do I Manage Caregiver Stress and Burnout?
Set Realistic Goals for Yourself
Accept that you might require assistance with caregiving and ask for assistance from others where necessary. Support groups for caregivers or family members of those suffering from diseases like cancer or Alzheimer's may be offered by local organizations or places of worship (in person or online). To give the caregiver a break from the patient, these organizations may also offer respite care.
Express What You Feel
It can be incredibly cathartic to simply express what you're going through. Sharing your emotions with loved ones or friends won't make you a burden on them. Most people will be flattered that you trust them enough to confide in them, and this will only solidify your relationship.
Make Time for Yourself
If activities like reading, gardening, tinkering in your workshop, knitting, playing with your pets, or watching sports are some of your happy-making pastimes, schedule time each week for them.
Know Your Limits
Be realistic about your situation and aware of your limitations. Recognize and accept your vulnerability to burnout as a caregiver.
If Possible, Divide the Responsibilities
Make every effort to involve as many family members as you can. Even a person who lives far away can contribute. Separate the tasks involved in providing care, if possible. For example, one person could handle the financial and bill-paying duties, another could handle the grocery shopping, and so on.
Look Into In-Home Senior Care
In-home senior care can take big loads off of your shoulders and lessen the stress that comes with caregiving. Asking for assistance and putting your own health and wellness first is never selfish. In-home senior care services have a plethora of services that will uniquely cater to the clients, ensuring that your senior loved one is always comfortable and secure, Looking for an In-Home Senior Care Service?
Look no further! Unified Pledge has your back. Unified Pledge is a leading provider of in-home senior care solutions in Palm Beach County and Broward County. We offer free, no-obligation in-home consultations, cost estimates, and insurance policy benefit reviews. Unified Pledge Home Health provides a FREE consultation. Talk to them about your situation and explore your options.
Hiring professionals from Unified Pledge comes with the following advantages:
Level II FBI background checks of all staff
Driving history checks
Constant communication to patients, family, and care team
Registered Nurse supervision is ongoing with every care plan