Grandparents serve many vital roles in their families, and it’s possible that your grandmother or grandfather helped with taking care of you when you were younger. Now, the roles are reversed, and you’re the one looking after your grandparent. Serving as a caregiver for your grandparent means you might be stepping into your role during the prime years of your life. You may also still be developing your understanding of your loved one’s needs. These tips will help you start your caregiving journey in a way that allows you to practice self-care and feel confident about how you help your loved one.
1. Stay in Touch with Your Friends
Loneliness is a huge problem for caregivers of any age, and you might feel the sting of missing out on social occasions. Right now, you might be watching your friends go to college, start families, and get married. Although you might not be able to be there for every special moment, you can try to attend the events you can. Social media is also great for sending quick messages to check in with your friends, and they can lift your spirits by sending inspirational texts.
2. Find a Support Group
Many younger caregivers lack the life experience they need to guide their decisions. If you haven’t spent much time around seniors, talking to other caregivers can give you some much-needed insight. You can find support groups that offer in-person meetings, or you can go online to find people from all over the world. In either case, you can learn from the experiences of other caregivers who have faced similar situations.
Caring for senior loved ones can be challenging for families who don’t have expertise or professional training in home care, but this challenge doesn’t have to be faced alone. Family caregivers can turn to Home Care Assistance for the help they need. We provide high-quality live-in and respite care as well as comprehensive Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care.
3. Take Care of Your Health
When you’re young, it’s easy to think you’ll catch up on sleep later or address that minor tooth pain when it gets worse. However, putting things off now can lead to bigger problems that impact your ability to keep caring for your loved one. You can avoid long-term consequences for your health by having someone else watch over your loved one while you attend your annual checkups.
4. Watch Out for Increasing Levels of Stress
There’s such a thing as caregiving creep. It’s possible you took on your role with full confidence that you could help out with small things, such as washing an extra load of your loved one’s clothes or dropping off groceries. Now, you might be facing more responsibilities, such as helping your grandparent remember to take medication or get to the bathroom at night. If you feel like your duties are mounting, take a moment to check in with yourself. Feeling higher levels of stress is a sign you need to be wary of burnout.
If you’re the primary family caregiver for an elderly loved one and need additional assistance providing high-quality at-home care, Tucson Home Care Assistance can help. We are a leading home care agency committed to changing the way seniors age.
5. Use Respite Care for Regular Breaks
Your decision to be a caregiver is honorable, but there’s no need to sacrifice having a life. Respite caregivers are always available to step in and take care of seniors while family caregivers take some time off. Scheduling a break to rest or catch up with friends is important for your mental health and helps your grandparent feel better about accepting your assistance.
In Tucson, respite care is a great help to many families. Caring for a senior loved one can be overwhelming at times, which puts family caregivers at risk for burnout. However, an in-home caregiver can take over your loved one’s care, allowing you the time you need to focus on your own health, maintain a full-time job, or care for other members of your family. Home Care Assistance will work with you to customize a care plan that’s just right for your loved one’s needs. Call one of our friendly Care Managers today at (520) 276-6555 to learn more about our customized care plans.