10 Tips for Taking Care of a Caregiver

By: rebecca2009

the care-receiver would recognize this and try to minimize the negative effects of their caregiver. As we all know, this is not a perfect world.
Keep in mind that what may be extremely stressful for you, may be a minor irritation for someone else, and maybe not all stressful to a third person. It is mainly your perception, interpretation, and response to an event that determines your stress level. However, certain events (such as long-term caregiving) tend to be viewed as highly stressful by most people, most of the time.
Stress can make you sick---physically, emotionally, or both at the same time. Sometimes, good caregiving can be overwhelming if steps are not taken to stay in good shape.
Here are some tips for taking care of a caregiver:
1. Make sure their care-receiver (patient) gets an early medical diagnosis. This will help the caregiver set up a better care plan.
2. Caregivers need complete information about their care-receiver's disease. They need answers to their questions and a chance to learn what to expect as the disease progresses.
3. Caregivers need help in locating resources. They also need to know how and when to use them.
4. Caregivers need a chance to grieve with the one who is ill. In addition, they need to be able to enjoy the good times, too.
5. Caregivers will benefit from a good support system. Counseling can help the caregiver identify signs of stress.
6. Caregivers can use actual physical assistance. If everyone pitches in and lends a hand, it makes a big difference.
7. Schedule regular respite time for the caregiver.
8. Schedule regular health screenings for the care-receiver and caregiver. Caregivers have a tendency to ignore their own health needs.
9. Caregivers need compassion and love and plenty of kind words.
10. Caregivers may need help in moving onward after their loved-one dies.
Being a caregiver may change your life. There is often an adjustment phase. You may find it necessary to redefine your sense of purpose. You may find it impossible to return to your earlier life. Take some time to reflect on the experience and never stop caring.
This article was written by Rebecca Sharp Colmer, creator of MeAndMyCaregivers, a communications hub for everyone on the caregiving team. She is also the creator of the Family Caregiver Starter Kit, which contains useful resources, forms and information for caregivers. Visit http://www.meandmycaregivers.com to learn more.

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Rebecca Sharp Colmer, CSA, is a Certified Senior Advisor, as recognized by the Society of Certified Senior Advisors. The national organization has trained over 14,000 professionals across the country. As an Elder Care Advocate she has taken the educational initiative to become a professional leader in meeting the key needs and vital issues concerning senior citizens. In addition, she is a nationally recognized author, publisher, and speaker. She is also a caregiver.

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