Reducing Caregiver Burnout



Posted on

Oct 26, 2022


Minnesota - Twin Cities Metro Area

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Burnout is common for those who provide care to their loved ones. In fact, AARP found that 36% of family caregivers are highly stressed from being the primary caregiver for an aging loved one. Fortunately, there are many options to help you successfully deal with that stress. Consider utilizing these resources and tips to help you reduce caregiver burnout.

What is Caregiver Burnout?

Caregiver burnout is a state of physical, emotional, and mental exhaustion that can occur to those taking care of an aging adult. The stress from balancing the conflicting demands of your loved ones, your family and friends, and your work, and yourself could lead to losing sight of your own well-being. It can be compounded by feeling guilting of taking care of yourself rather than a loved one.

Burnout can present itself in a broad range of ways, including changes in your sleep pattern and/or eating habits, getting sick more often, untypical depression or mood swings, having a lack of energy, withdrawing from activities you normally enjoy, and general feelings of sadness or frustration. If these you are experiencing any of these, you could be experiencing caregiver burnout. Consider completing the self-assessment questionnaire from the  National Alliance for Caregiving to better understand your potential level of burnout.

How do I Reduce Burnout?

  • Acknowledge your boundaries. You should not feel embarrassed or ashamed for being overwhelmed; it doesn’t make you a bad caregiver! Instead, an honest assessment of your current state and limits is the first step to keeping yourself healthy to then care for others.
  • Set realistic goals. What used to be for your loved one may not be reality now. Instead of being stressed trying to accomplish targets that may not be possible. It’s important to set realistic goals with your loved one with an understanding of their condition. No matter their abilities, identify and focus on the most impactful ways to improve or maintain their quality of life.
  • Keep yourself healthy. It’s easy to put your needs behind your loved one, but you need to stay healthy to care for them. Reestablish routines and practices, such as exercising regularly, eating well, visiting doctors/therapists/etc., getting enough sleep, that help you stay healthy.
  • Dedicate time for yourself. Your mental and emotional wellbeing is also important to reducing burnout. Whether it is reading a book, having a cup of coffee, or chatting with a friend, set aside dedicated time to focus on what makes you happy can help tremendously.
  • Join a support group. Caregiving can feel like a uniquely challenging experience, but there are many people going through similar circumstances as you. There are many caregiver support groups that can connect you with others caring for their loved ones. Check out this article from AARP for resources on finding and selecting support groups.
  • Simplify communication methods. On top of your day-to-day duties, it can be tiring to keep your family and friends updated on your loved one’s condition. It could be helpful to have one place to keep everyone in the loop. Instead of replying to each person individually, consider utilizing a text or social media group or using websites like Caring Bridge or Post Hope.
  • Get professional help. At some point, you may not be able to provide all the cares needed to keep your loved one safe. From limited hours in the home to extensive care in a facility, there are many services that can help you. Refer to Seniors Blue Book to learn about services in the Twin Cities metro area.

CareAparent’s Home Care Solutions

CareAparent can help lighten your load and allow you to become a spouse, family member, or friend rather than the primary caregiver. Our compassionate team can provide in-home care to address their specific needs, whether it’s a couple hours a week or 24 hours a day. We are certified by Medicare and accredited by The Joint Commission, so you can trust us to keep your loved one safe.

Visit or call 651.702.HOME (4663) to learn about our home care solutions and to see how we can help you and your loved one.

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Why Choose A Winter Respite At A Personal Care Home

Moving to a personal care home is a big decision based on many factors. Cold winter months are drawing near, and the Farmers Almanac is forecasting a Winter Wonderland for the northeastern United States. Keeping this in mind, and to avoid winter chores, this is a great time to consider a respite stay and experience first-hand what life is like living in a personal care home.Experience an easier moveWinter weather conditions like snow and ice can complicate the move to a personal care home. Moving before bad weather conditions arrive allows seniors to avoid potential weather-related delays, accidents or other challenges during transportation and when moving belongings.Try out the personal care homeRespite care offers seniors a chance to try out a retirement community without making a long-term commitment. Country Meadows offers all-rental retirement living accommodations, so seniors are not beholden to a lengthy lease or an ownership stake. A respite stay can help older adults see for themselves whether or not the community is a good fit for a permanent move.Avoid winter weather challengesMany older adults struggle with winter chores such as shoveling snow, chipping away ice, walking on icy sidewalks, managing heating systems and driving in inclement weather. A temporary respite stay at a personal care home eliminates these responsibilities, as well as many other daily chores, removing worries. It provides seniors the opportunity to settle into their new living arrangement without the added stress of winter weather.Access daily assistance and health servicesAlong with cold weather, the winter season can also bring several challenges for older adults to maintain wellness. A major benefit to living at a personal care home is prompt, easy access to health resources and assistance. This is especially beneficial for seniors with health concerns and mobility issues. If a resident requires assistance with medications, dressing, bathing or another daily activity, simply push a call button and a personal care associate can provide needed help. And a wellness team keeps an eye on each residents overall health.Reduce lonelinessMany seniors experience loneliness and isolation while living at home. The winter months can magnify these feelings. Respite care offers opportunities for social interaction and engagement with new neighbors and friends in the same age group, reducing feelings of loneliness and providing mental stimulation.Participate in activities, enjoy entertainment and outingsSenior living communities often offer a variety of enriching activities and events. At Country Meadows, our Vibe program considers each residents physical, cognitive, social and spiritual needs and customizes activities, entertainment, outings and purposeful service opportunities. Events are organized seasonally by categories and offer opportunities for socialization and fun. When living at a personal care home, one doesnt need to brave the elements outside, because all the fun during winter is happening indoors, fostering a sense of belonging among residents.Provide relief for family caregiversA respite stay offers a break for family members and friends providing care in a seniors private home. This break is especially appreciated during winter months when private caregiving responsibilities might become more demanding due to inclement weather, illnesses or holiday-related activities.When considering respite care at a personal care home or retirement community over the winter months, its important to do some homework. Families and seniors should research and visit potential facilities to ensure the community can meet specific needs and preferences of each individual. The decision for respite care should prioritize the well-being, comfort and specific needs of each person, aiming to provide a supportive and enriching experience.  Contact Country Meadows Retirement Communities today.

Looking for Occupational Therapy in Your Own Home?

CareAparent offers Occupational Therapy (OT) as part of a multidisciplinary approach to care in the home. This type of care can only be provided by medical personnel that is licensed and registered. Occupational Therapists in the home environment assist clients who may have pain, illness, injury or a decline in function due to the aging process by creating routines and strategies for managing daily activities safely and productively while reducing the risk of injury or further decline.Interdisciplinary Approach to SafetyRead Details: A CareAparent Occupational Therapist (OT) ... conducts an in-home health assessment to design a Plan of Care customized for you or your loved ones physical, emotional, and functional environment. Our Occupational Therapists will work with you to assess performance skills and identify the best strategies needed to promote independence and safety in the home.Cognition and Memory FunctionRead Details: Dementia and similar cognitive impairments... may put you or your loved one at a higher risk for accidents or injury in the home. Occupational Therapists can perform an evaluation to determine cognitive abilities. A Plan of Care is developed to provide the guidance and tools for improved functioning, adaptation, and continued independence.Chronic Disease ManagementRead Details: Chronic disease management relies on... recommending and implementing solutions that address disease related limitations in daily routines. Our Occupational Therapists can teach strategies to manage symptoms that may interfere with activities of daily living as well as the outcomes for prescribed solutions.Sensory ChallengesRead Details: Very often, sensory challenges like... vision loss and changes in speech can have an impact on our daily routine. CareAparents Occupational Therapists can propose solutions and techniques for challenges associated with vision and hearing loss or speech changes.Falls Prevention ProgramRead Details: Falls can threaten you or your loved... ones safety and independence and it could lead to hospitalization. CareAparents Falls Prevention program is designed to provide screening, instructions, practical interventions, and resources to address the risk for falling and create. awareness and strategies for avoiding falls. This can help prevent injuries and reduce emergency department visits, hospitalizations, and readmissions.Client Centered GoalsRead Details: As we age, daily self-care activities... can become burdensome and a risk to overall health. Certain personal cares or activities like using technology may require a higher level of mental and physical coordination that you may no longer have. Together, you and our Occupational Therapist will identify, collaborate, and set goals so you can acquire and maintain a skillset that promotes the management of any long-term conditions.Home SafetyRead Details: Inconspicuous risks to your physical safety... can go unnoticed in the home. Our Occupational Therapists perform home safety assessments to help identify factors that can address these risks. From their assessment, recommendations are made to you or your loved one to implement changes focused on a safe home environment.Download BrochureFor the most compassionate and comprehensive in-home senior care Minnesota has to offer call CareAparent today at 651-702-HOME (4663).  Request a Consultation Today! 

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