Respite can rejuvenate caregivers

Family caregiving is a part of daily life for many. It’s been said that over threequarters of all caregiving is done by family members.

Caregiving is a demanding, sometimes very difficult job and no one is equipped to do it alone.

If you are doing it alone, consider some respite as a break that you deserve. It’s hard to step back and take a really objective look at a situation when we are so deep in it. So respite care can provide that short-term break that relieves stress, restores energy, and promotes some balance in your life.

Respite care doesn’t mean that you are dodging responsibilities. On the contrary, you can only provide your best when you are feeling at your best. And you can only care for a loved one effectively when you are caring for yourself effectively. Respite care complements the care that you are able to provide in a few ways.

1. You are able to have a little break from the energy-intensive caregiving for a determined period of time

2. You are able to include different social opportunities for your loved one that you are caregiving for; you are able to share your experiences with someone you build a trusting relationship with (it always helps to share ideas!) 3. You get to catch up on some of the things on your to-do list you’ve been trying to get to for a while.

So if you are feeling a little fatigued from a caregiving situation, ask for a consultation visit and chat about how a break could help.

It can be as short as a couple hours or a day, or as long as you want it to be if you are away for a needed break or holiday. Even overnights or live-in situations are convenient.

Planning starts with analyzing needs, both yours and your loved one’s. What care or services would be the most helpful? Help with transportation?

Medication tracking and reminders? Special social outings? Assistance with walking, or nutritious/delicious meal preparation? Friendly companionship and activities? These are all things to discuss when planning for a successful outcome. The end goal is an enriched caregiving situation with resultant rejuvenated energy, so you can be at your best! Chris Wilkinson is the owner/GM for Nurse Next Door Home Care Services in Cowichan and central Vancouver Island. For questions or a free consultation call 250-748-4357.

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