Yes, taking care of an elderly family member, especially a sick one, is one of the hardest jobs you’ll ever do. Heck, your boss sounds like a saint by comparison. Your kid isn’t that much of a brat after all, huh? In many cases today, a younger family member often finds himself/herself having to care for a parent, grandparent, auntie, etc. In fact, in many families, the duties are often rotated so several family members can provide care. We know this is a tough job but here are a few tips to consider to make your life easier if you face the daunting challenge of elderly care.
Tips for Caregivers
- Get support from other caregivers. You are not alone!
- Make sure you take care of your own health so that you can be strong enough to take care of your loved one.
- Don’t let your pride get in the way! Accept offers of help and suggest specific things people can do to help you.
- Learn how to communicate well with doctors so they can help you help your elderly family member.
- Caregiving is hard work so please do take “respite breaks” often.
- Keep on the lookout for signs of depression and don’t delay getting professional help when you need it.
- Be open-minded about new technologies that can help you care for your loved one.
- Make sure you organize medical information so it’s up to date and easy to find.
- Make sure any required legal documents are in order.
- Give yourself plenty of credit, including a GOLD STAR, for doing the best you can in one of the toughest jobs there is!
Okay, at this point you’re either fine with these tips, or you’re thinking, “maybe I need a professional caregiver?” Yes, you don’t have to take on the burden of being the sole family caregiver or even having to share the burden with your family members. Perhaps, rather than sharing the time of caring for that special old folk, maybe you should share the cost of a professional caregiver. There are a growing number of options today and it’s worth checking them out. Whatever you decide, you always will be loved by your older family member, because that’s simply what our parents, grandparents, aunties, and uncles do, right?