January 31, 2019
As family members, and as friends, many of us are called upon at some time to consider assisting those close to us in connection with an illness/surgery or aging. As we take on those roles, we often feel guilty if we become overwhelmed. According to experts in these fields, it is important to consider the family/friend caregiver’s own needs as well as those who are being helped. Common caregiver issues include:
- Feeling overwhelmed and trapped, by the situation and/or the time involved,
- Feeling like other family members are being abandoned,
- Feeling afraid of dealing with medical issues,
- Feeling as if self-care and other personal issues are suffering, and
- Feeling guilty for feeling any or all of the above!
A recent web posting from AARP (American Association of Retired People) pointed out that family/friend caregivers “have a lot of reasons for not arranging respite for themselves. Among them: guilt, money, being too busy in the present to plan for the near future and reluctance to change their loved one’s routine.” The site goes on to say, “every caregiver needs a caregiver — someone who will care for your loved one for a few hours, days or weeks, so you can take care of yourself.”
Many articles discussing home health care and ‘aging at home’ discuss the need for a plan for the caregiving situation, which addresses these issues. The National Institute on Aging, at this site, https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/caregiving, provides several discussions regarding planning for the caregiving situation, as well as finding help when overwhelmed. Another page on the NIA site provides more tips for caregivers needing help taking care of themselves, https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/taking-care-yourself-tips-caregivers.
One other site, dailycaring.com, has many resources for the caregiver who is feeling overwhelmed. This link, https://dailycaring.com/how-to-be-ok-with-getting-caregiving-help/ provides specific guidance on encouraging caregivers of older adults to seek help. They conclude with:
“Did you know that getting help will actually make you a better caregiver? That might sound crazy, but it’s true.
If you get help, you’ll reduce stress, cut down your to-do list, and be able to regularly take time for yourself. This is guaranteed to improve your health and mood. When you’re feeling better, you’ll be more patient and caring with your older adult.”
While much of the information here, and online, deal with caregivers for older people, much of the information equally applies to those providing caregiving after injury or surgery. For those caregivers, there are usually specific concerns about dealing with medical issues. While the need for a plan still applies, the caregiver needs to be up-front about their ability and/or willingness to handle issues from bathing to wound care. Professional assistance is available and can be provided for short periods of time.
Just Like Family Home Care is proud to serve the community by providing short and long term assistance, including providing respite care to help the caregivers. As family/friend caregivers need assistance, we stand ready to be part of their team and plan. Most importantly, Just Like Family encourages family/friend caregivers to remember to take care of themselves.
March 27, 2018
Facing the reality of finding a caregiver for a loved one can be very challenging. Trusting a person or company to take care of your family member is a big decision and there are several things to consider before choosing.
Before you make the decision here are five things you should do before selecting the a caregiver:
- Evaluate your needs
Determine what kind of services your loved one will need and how often.
- How much time does the person in need of the service require supervision? Can the person be left alone for a certain extend of time?
- Do you need a certified nurse to provide medical needs or a certified health care aid? Do you prefer a certified personnel? (This might be important for your budget)
- Does your insurance cover any of the caregiver services?
This will determine your budget and help you decide what kind of services you can use.
- Perform a background check
After you understand your needs and budget, make sure the person caring for your family member is someone you can trust. A background check will give you peace of mind knowing that no person with criminal record will enter your house and treat your loved one.
- What are your expectations
Help your caregiver understand what you expect
- Many times, caregivers and caretakers will have different expectations. To avoid any miscommunication, make sure to write down anything that is important to you and discuss those points with the caregiver. This will help prevent any future misunderstanding.
- Make sure to involve the care receiver in the decision process
- Give your loved one the opportunity to be heard. This is a very important decision in a difficult time which requires a lot of sensitivity.
Just Like Family Home Care offers the ultimate peace of mind when choosing a care provider. Our expert consultation will help you and your loved ones select the right services for your budget and refer fully qualified caregivers. Each caregiver we refer is hand-selected and has had their background thoroughly checked.