Home Care Blog>In Home Care | December 30, 2019
Considering Respite Care | If you’re the primary caregiver for your senior family member, then you know that it can be a rewarding yet emotionally exhausting experience. While it’s important to care for your loved one, it’s also important to pay attention to how you’re feeling and care for yourself, as well. Many caregivers will suffer from compassion fatigue at least once during their time as a caregiver. Compassion fatigue is when a caregiver spends so much time on the person being cared for without taking the time to focus on themselves, to the point of exhaustion. This often ends in the caregiver feeling decreased empathy.
Caregivers who are having compassion fatigue may experience a variety of symptoms, the biggest one being decreased empathy. Other symptoms may include feeling physically or mentally exhausted, feelings of dread or guilt, irritability, anxiety, and difficulty sleeping or making decisions. Someone dealing with compassion fatigue may have trouble finding meaning in caregiving and may isolate themselves. Some caregivers may even deny that they’re feeling compassion fatigue. If left untreated for too long, they may start resenting the person they are caring for.
If you’re a caregiver, regularly check in with how you’re feeling. By paying attention to how you’re feeling – and giving yourself breaks when you need them – you can prevent family relationship strains and you’ll be feeling better.
If you’ve been noticing these symptoms, you might be wondering what you should do. Well, the first step is noticing and acknowledging these feelings. Then, determine what you need in order to de-stress. This can look different for everyone. For some, just spending 10 minutes a day on a walk or meditating may help. Others might try to spend one evening a week socializing with friends. Or they might find writing in a journal, finding a caregiver support group, or talking to a counselor to be helpful.
If you’ve been meaning to do these things but don’t feel that you can leave your loved one at home alone, consider working with a respite caregiver. A respite caregiver can take your place while you run errands, take a vacation, or simply need some time to yourself.
At Comfort Keepers, we understand that sometimes family members need time to practice self-care. That’s why we offer respite care services that can reduce the burden of caring for a loved one. While caring for a family member can be very rewarding, it’s important that you don’t forget about your needs. If you’re interested in working with Comfort Keepers, call or contact us online today.
Contact the Comfort Keepers Calgary office to learn more about how we can help maintain safety, comfort, and happiness in the home.