Being a caregiver for someone you love is one of the greatest gifts you can give, but it can also be very stressful. As you care for your loved one, there are resources that can help and things you can do to ease the strain on your own health and well-being.
Here are some ways to care for yourself while caring for your loved one:
- Talk to your doctor if you feel depressed or anxious. Signs that you may need help include crying more, sleeping more or less than usual, changes in appetite, and lack of interest in your regular activities.
- Find out about sources of support and help in your community. Reach out to family members, friends, neighbors, your place of worship, your Area Agency on Aging or your workplace for help with caregiver tasks.
- Realize that your health matters - it benefits everyone if you stay healthy and less stressed.
- Be aware of the toll stress takes on your health. Try to find time for exercise, eating well and sleeping enough.
- Learn about the condition your loved one is facing and how it may affect his/her physical and emotional state.