Community Blog

How Respite Care Can Help to Ease Your Caregiver Stress

By Vicki and Brian Day

Caregivers in Walnutport PA

Caregivers in Walnutport PAStress is a reality of being a family caregiver. Taking on this role means that you are dedicating your time, energy, and resources to ensuring that your aging parent's needs are met on a regular basis. If you are like millions of caregivers throughout the country, the responsibilities do not stop there. You are also still raising your children, managing a career, and taking care of your marriage. This means that you are always on the go and likely feel that there is just not enough time in the day or energy in your body to handle all of the tasks. This can add up to serious stress that puts your mental, emotional, physical, and cognitive health at risk. Having an arsenal of ways to combat and manage that stress protects your health and well-being, and helps to ensure that you can continue being the highest quality caregiver possible for your aging parent.

One of the most valuable tools that you can have in your caregiver stress management toolbox is respite care. This is care that you can use as a "safety net" or backup measure as opposed to something that you implement as regular and consistent part of your care routine. In essence, respite care is like a professional extension of the care that you give to your parent. This care provider is available to step in and care for your parent when you need to be somewhere else for a few hours or even for a few days.

Some of the ways that a respite care provider can help to ease your caregiver stress include:

Dividing your time. No family caregiver wants to look at the calendar for the next week and see that there is a ballet recital and a doctor's appointment scheduled at the same time, and then the next day there is a soccer game and a bridge club meeting. Knowing that more than one person or group expects you at the same time is incredibly stressful and puts you in the position of having to make very difficult decisions. Rather than always having to choose caring for your parent to keep her safe and secure, respite care means that you can divide your time more equally. The respite care provider can provide transportation to the doctor's appointment and bridge club meeting as well as support, companionship, and meal assistance before and after. You can then enjoy time with your children.

Peace of mind. You might think that your elderly loved one would be safe for a few hours on her own or that it would not be a big deal to leave her overnight on her own, but do you really want to take that chance? If you are at all unsure of if your parent would be safe or healthy alone, respite care is your safety net. This care provider will give you peace of mind that your parent is safe and receiving the care that she needs.

Time to yourself. As a caregiver you likely do not get much time for yourself. Just taking a special day every couple of weeks or planning a getaway can make a tremendous difference in your stress. A respite care provider can enable you to take this time for yourself without feeling guilty or worrying that your loved one is not safe or healthy.

If you or an aging loved one are considering in-home caregivers in Walnutport, PA, please contact the caring staff of Home Helpers. CALL TODAY! (610) 365-4266.