CARE FOR CAREGIVERS
November is National Family Caregiver’s Month. Caring for a family member or loved one can be very rewarding. But it can also be challenging—both physically and emotionally. Caregiver stress is all too common. If you’re not careful, it can take a toll on your own health and well-being.
Taking breaks from caregiving to care for yourself and your needs can help reduce stress. Respite care is a great resource that can help you do just that. Respite care services vary, but all provide short-term care for your loved one and give you a much-needed break. Here are some of the services that may be available to you.
- In-home respite: A health care worker or companion comes to your house to provide care for your loved one. Home care may be more comfortable for your loved one and easier for you.
- Day hospitals: During the day, your loved one is cared for in a hospital setting. This is a great choice if your loved one has a lot of health care needs.
- Adult day-care centers: Churches and community centers often offer day care for adults. These centers offer care as well as social support and activities. This is a nice option for regular, structured care.
- Short-term nursing homes: Many nursing homes and assisted living facilities offer care. Some offer short-term stays, including overnight and weekend stays.
Check with your insurance company to see if any respite care is covered. Medicare and Medicaid may also help cover some of the costs. You can also check with the National Family Caregiver Support Program to see what services are available to you.
Respite care is a great way to give yourself a break from the demands of caring for your loved one. After all, if you are not healthy, then you won’t be in a good position to care for someone else. So respite care benefits both you and your loved one. You may want to arrange for regular care. Or you may use it only on an as-needed basis. You can also combine respite care with help from family and friends.
Use your time away from your loved one to relax and recharge. Go out with friends, hit the gym, or get a massage. Taking time to care for yourself can help you better care for your loved one.