Although many family caregivers find it rewarding to care for their aging loved ones and provide a warm environment, they are also forced to deal with a fair amount of stress. As a result, caregivers can become completely exhausted and burnt out.

Find out if you have caregiver burnout and how you can practice more self-care while still providing a high-quality life for your aging loved one.

What Is Caregiver Burnout?

Caregiving can be physically exhausting, but it can also be emotionally and mentally draining, resulting in caregiver burnout. According to recent research, 23% of Americans say caregiving has harmed their health. Most caregivers don’t realize how exhausted they really are since they are so busy providing quality care to their loved ones.

If you’re taking care of a loved one, here are 5 common signs you might be on the road to caregiver burnout:

Depression. Many studies report high levels of depression in caregivers. Often, they feel guilty for not being able to prevent someone’s decline in health or for not providing enough care to help them thrive.

Anxiety. It’s common to experience various and overwhelming states of anxiety when you manage too many responsibilities, feel out of control of your own situation, fear for your future or the future of a loved one, have financial responsibilities, and need to coordinate care.

Loneliness. Taking care of others and working most of the time can make you lose your sense of self. Your life might be dominated by caregiving, or you might feel guilty spending time on self-care. If this is the case, you might feel as if you have nothing to talk about. Consider moving your loved one to a senior living community when you are unable to find time for yourself to truly reset.

Fatigue. Poor sleep quality is reported by 36.7% of caregivers. You might have trouble getting adequate sleep if you have a family member with dementia who loves to explore at night, or you worry about their safety while you sleep. As a result, caregivers suffer from depression and poor physical health.

Anger and frustration. It is normal to be angry and frustrated when providing regular care to an elderly person. Caregiving for an older adult with a lot of needs or a loved one with dementia can be especially challenging. Caregivers who feel increasingly frustrated with their loved ones might suffer from caregiver burnout.

How to Cope With the Stress of Being a Caregiver

Despite your best efforts, you can’t stop your loved one from aging. It is possible, however, to take care of your well-being and meet your own needs, so you can face common caregiving challenges with a positive attitude.

If you want to avoid burnout while caring for others, here are a few ways to get a break.

  • Find a support group. It’s estimated that there are more than 34 million Americans who care for an older adult, which means that you may know someone who is also a caregiver. Consider joining a support group in your area or talking to someone about caregiving challenges.
  • Make a care plan. You and your loved one can both benefit from developing a care plan. To simplify advanced planning, a health profile summarizes a person’s health conditions, medications, healthcare providers, and other information. In addition to reducing emergency room visits and hospitalizations, care plans have been shown to improve the overall quality of care for older adults. In addition, the resources your customized care plan provides can assist you in maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
  • Consider Respite Care. Taking a temporary break from the demands of caregiving allows you to rest and rejuvenate. A professional caregiver can come to your home or your loved one can go to a senior living community that offers respite care.
    Consider Assisted Living or Memory Care. A senior living community, such as one managed by Fields Senior Living, offers a safe and enriching environment where residents can get plenty of social activity, receive appropriate assistance when needed, and learn how to maintain independence from an expert care team in a safe, enriching environment. With your family member taken care of, you’ll sleep easier at night and have more time for yourself.
  • Enjoy your life. Even if you are stressed right now, it won’t last forever. Keep an eye on the big picture, and remember how well you’re doing. You’ve contributed to your loved one’s health and happiness, and that’s always worth celebrating.

Discover Your Options at Fields Senior Living

In order to create meaningful experiences every day, Fields Senior Living collaborates with families to understand your loved one’s interests and engage their minds.

Get in touch with one of our team members to find out how Fields Senior Living can be your partner during your loved one’s stay in one of our Memory Care or Assisted Living communities.

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