Taking on the responsibility of being a caretaker can be rewarding and fulfilling, but the time and dedication that it requires can become overwhelming. Follow these tips for staying away from caregiver burnout.
Don't Forget to Take Care of Your Own Health
Many caretakers are so focused and dedicated to taking care of their loved one that their personal health can start to go downhill. In order to have energy to take care of someone else, remember to get enough sleep, eat healthy and exercise every week. There are a number of exercises you can do with your loved one, so you both are taking care of yourselves. Many caregivers also let their own doctor visits fall behind – make sure to schedule appointments for yourself as well.
Implementing simple and easy organizational strategies can make life easier on you and can help with keeping a consistent schedule for both you and your loved one. Take notes on your care receiver's evolving needs, create an efficient system for all aspects of medication management (a pill box is a great method!) and maintain a calendar to help with prioritizing your responsibilities.
Talk to Someone Who Cares
When you start to feel emotionally depleted and the person who you are caring for is not giving you positive reinforcement, take the time to talk to a friend or family member who is understanding and will acknowledge all that you are doing and going through. If possible, find a friend who will not only listen and care, but who has gone through a similar situation and can give helpful advice.
You may have a lot of individual friends and family who text, call or email you asking how your loved one is doing after a surgery or doctor appointment. If you become overwhelmed by the task of informing people individually, find a way to mass communicate. For instance, you could set up a Facebook page where you post updates to followers or you could send an email to everyone. Another way to mass communicate is to set up a page on a website like Caring Bridge where you can send update messages to everyone at once.
Make Time to Do Fun Activities with Your Loved One
Something that really helps with preventing caregiver burnout is to make time for doing fun activities with your loved one. While it is important to assist them in necessary daily living activities, it’s also important to bond together through enjoyable projects. Some fun activities to do with your loved one include: reminiscing, looking at old photos, listening to music, doing arts and crafts or reading together.
Adult Day Programs
An Adult Day Program is not only a helpful resource for a senior needing care, but it also allows you (as the caretaker) the opportunity to go to appointments, take care of other responsibilities, and take time to re-energize. At the Martin Luther Adult Day Program, we offer both full day or half day programs and caregivers are welcome to drop-in during the Adult Day Program activities. Some of the activities and services that we offer Adult Day Program members are exercise, snacks and meals, special outings, music, and spiritual services. If you are looking into an Adult Day Program for your loved one, call us at 952-948-5167 or schedule a tour.
If you are already experiencing caregiver burnout and you don’t know what to do next, we are here for you. If you are looking into assisted living for your loved one, we have experience helping seniors and their families transition into assisted living. Call us at 952-948-5167 for more information or to schedule a tour – we can offer guidance and help you navigate the world of assisted living.
Martin Luther Campus is part of the Ebenezer family of Lutheran Senior Care Communities. We provide transitional care and assisted living apartments for seniors in Bloomington and Richfield. We also have adult day clubs and memory care programs for seniors living at home. We’re located at 1401 East 100th St. Bloomington, MN. Are you interested in transitioning to assisted living or do you have a loved one that needs assisted living? Call Amy at 952-948-5167 for more information and to schedule a tour today.
Director of Community Relations
Hello friends, my name is Kate and I'd love to share with you ALL of the wonderful things happening at Martin Luther Campus. Be sure to check our Blog, Lifestyle page and Facebook page often to stay updated on the happenings at our community!