Throughout the United States, people are caring for aging loved ones at higher rates than ever before. Whether working as a formal or informal caregiver, countless Americans are doing what they can to provide the highest quality of life to the country’s aging population. For those who are taking care of someone for the foreseeable future, make sure to follow these helpful tips.
Create A Thorough Plan
If you are starting to care for an aging loved one for the first time, it is important to create a thorough plan of action in the beginning. The first step is to determine the type of care that the person needs both personally and medically. Are they generally mobile and able to complete personal care tasks without assistance? Do they have important medications that need to be taken on a particular schedule? Answering these questions in the beginning can help make the process smoother, which is especially important for new caregivers.
The plan should also have a list of important phone numbers for any doctors, family members, or friends that can step in to assist during unexpected emergencies. Additionally, many caregivers find it beneficial to keep a physical calendar with important appointments handy, especially if they are caring for someone with more complex medical issues.
Put Together A Team
When an aging loved one gets to the point where they need more assistance with daily tasks, it can seem overwhelming initially. This is why it is important to put together a “team” that consists of your loved one’s closest friends and family. Find people who your loved one trusts and explain how they can help with the ongoing situation. While not every person will be able to help, having a team to act as an additional support system can be highly beneficial for the caregiver. Once the team is compiled, make sure to keep the contact information for each person in a place that is easily accessible in an emergency.
Give Yourself Breaks
While your role as a caregiver is vital to the person you are caring for, it is so important to remember to take care of yourself as well. If there are times where you are feeling overwhelmed, reach out to the team about stepping in briefly while you mentally recharge. Taking time for yourself can not only reduce the risk of experiencing caregiver burnout, but it can help refresh your physical and mental energy.
To learn more about how to care for an aging loved one, visit Hillstone Healthcare at HillstoneHealthcare.co.