5 Ways Dementia Caregivers Can Defeat Exhaustion

Many of us saw our parents as superheroes during our childhoods. They were there when we needed them. They kissed away our cuts and scrapes, destroyed scary shadows, and fought the boogie man. We never imagined anything could defeat them. Then we grew up, and our parents got older. Now, it’s time for us to be the superheroes. The enemy, however, is strong. Dementia is a terrible test of our resilience, and exhaustion is a very real challenge. In this article, we discuss 5 ways to give dementia caregivers a helping hand.

senior woman, 62 years old, dressed as superhero - caregiver concept

We Put on the Superhero Cape

We caregivers have our own lives to live. Our homes need cleaning, our spouses and children need our attention, and our careers have their own demands. Despite our resolve, we still get tired at the end of the day.

Super Tips to Try

At David York Agency, we understand your concerns. Below, we share some of our favorite tips for dementia caregivers.

  • Get plenty of rest. If you’re not rested, then you won’t have the energy to handle all the demands of caregiving. It’s equally important for you to recognize the specific signs of burnout. When you feel overwhelmed, depressed, or fatigued, ask for help. Take a day off and relax. Spend time with a friend or participate in your favorite hobby to unwind.
  • Eat a balanced and nutritious diet. Dollar Menu cheeseburgers and French fries may be tempting when you’re rushed or tired, but these foods often leave you feeling sluggish. In the long run, your health will suffer.
  • Have fun with your loved oneLaugh! Make the day enjoyable for your loved one as well as yourself. For example, if your senior loves to bake, make favorite recipes together. Keep the conversation light while you work.
  • Help them to develop a pleasant routine. Everyone has preferences. Learn when your senior likes to perform daily activities and make the necessary accommodations. Stick to the routine as much as possible, and make allowances for difficult days.
  • Set alarms on their cell phone. Many seniors don’t like relying on someone else to tell them what to do and when to do it. So, be sure to put descriptive labels on each alarm. If you or your senior need help with technology, David York Agency has qualified staff who can help.

The best caregivers are always learning. Try the wonderful resources at the Alzheimer’s Association website. Also, be sure to talk to your doctor for information specific to your situation.

Superheroes Need Some Sidekicks!

Dementia caregivers need not fight alone, for David York Agency is here to help. Our qualified staff of professional RN’s, LPN’s, and Personal Care Aides (PCA) are ready to provide assistance.

For more information about David York Agency’s qualified, compassionate caregivers, contact us at 877.216.7676. A free phone consultation can help you decide what services might be best. We aim to provide you and your loved one with the assistance they need. If you’d like to hear more from us, please like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter, Google+, or LinkedIn.

For more helpful tips and information, contact us today.

Caregiver Stress: Fighting Severe Consequences

Caregivers Have Their Limits

Many caregivers who experience caregiver stress try to keep going despite emotional and physical fatigue. They often put their patients before themselves, allowing their stress to grow and manifest in poor health.

caregiver holding senior patient's hands and comforting her. experiencing caregiver stress

It’s important to note that this avoidance is not necessarily sustainable. While the selflessness of caregivers is commendable, their dismissal of self-care could lead to severe consequences.

Driven to Care

There are some caregivers who feel personally driven by their work and believe they can handle the stress. They are typically very compassionate individuals who live by helping others. They might hope that their empathy for others is enough to push them to do nearly anything.

However, being in this state will eventually take a toll on both physical and emotional health. It’s estimated that one-third of caregivers will put others first, even while struggling with personal health problems.

Caregiver Stress can Lead to Self-Destructive Behavior

Stressed caregivers are more likely to develop problems with substance abuse and alcoholism. These are health issues in their own right, but they can also lead to additional health problems.

Caregivers will often run errands for others, a task that might be impossible or actively dangerous if they’re suffering from drug problems themselves.

It’s also true that caregivers are more likely to commit suicide than workers in other fields. Caregivers are ill-equipped to diagnose or manage their own stress and unprepared to combat escalating mental health issues.

Mounting pressures, avoidance, and relying on the help of pills are all ways which could lead a good caregiver down a path of self-destruction.

Refusing to Ignore Problems

Caregivers don’t ignore the problems their patients’ experience, so why should they ignore there own? They should seek treatment for the real problems that have presented themselves while trying to address the underlying problem of caregiver stress.

David York Agency Can Help…..

For more information about David York Agency’s qualified, compassionate caregivers, contact us at 877.216.7676. A free phone consultation can help you decide what services might be best. We aim to provide you and your loved one with the assistance they need. If you’d like to hear more from us, please like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter, Google+, or LinkedIn.

For more helpful tips and information, contact us today.