Almost every caregiver worries about being a better caregiver. You probably do, too. The thing is, you don’t become a better caregiver by pushing yourself harder and depriving yourself more. Here are some ideas to get you to “superstar caregiver” status.
Keep Your Own Doctor’s Appointments
It’s a rare caregiver who is good about getting to the doctor when necessary. It’s possible that you’re able to make appointments with your doctor just fine, but are you keeping them? They don’t count if you don’t actually go to the appointment, meet with your doctor, and talk about the concerns you’ve got.
Stop Ignoring Health Concerns
Speaking of those health concerns, are you glossing over them or are you facing them head on? Family caregivers are sometimes like that knight in the Monty Python movie insisting that it’s “only a flesh wound.” If you’re ignoring little health problems now they’re going to turn into much bigger health problems later. Don’t ignore them.
Double Check Your Diet
What are you eating? If you’re grabbing whatever you can get through a drive-thru in ten minutes or less, it’s probably not that great for you. You’re demanding a lot from your body and from your brain when you’re a family caregiver. To keep yourself properly fueled, you have got to start eating foods that give you the nutrients that you need.
Track Your Sleep
If you’re not getting enough sleep or the quality of the sleep you’re getting is terrible, you probably are feeling exhausted right after you get up. That’s no way to keep you and your senior going. You need to track your sleep and determine what is keeping you from getting the best sleep possible. From there you can start to make changes.
Spend Time with Friends
You need to spend time around people you love and who love you. Your senior loves you, but she’s not the only person in the world who does. You need a variety of people in your life you can spend time with, laugh with, and enjoy. Take the time now to spend with people you care about.
Taking better care of yourself is going to lead to being a better caregiver. You can only give when you have the capacity to do so. Lean on support systems that you put in place, like hiring elder care providers. They give you the opportunity to take the time that you need for yourself.
If you or an aging parent are considering elder care in Philadelphia, PA, please contact the caring staff at Serenity Hospice today. Call (215) 867-5405.