Becoming the primary caregiver for a loved one whose physical or mental health is declining is more than just a challenging job. It is a series of challenging jobs.
You may find yourself on any given day handling transportation to and from medical appointments, helping your parent keep track of a complicated drug regimen, cleaning your parent's home, preparing meals for your loved one, and helping him or her with other activities of daily life. All of these are necessary activities, and are added to the responsibilities you already have for your own household.
In addition to all of these important tasks, you may find yourself dealing with caregiver stress. According to the Mayo Clinic, caring for a loved one strains even the most resilient people. A shift in roles between you and your aging parent can cause emotional turmoil for both of you. Added to the physical strain caused by caregiving, this emotional pain can be difficult to handle.
Lori, a woman with teen-aged children, a husband, and a business to run, found that to be the case. When her mother was diagnosed with a terminal illness, Lori stepped in as her mom's primary caregiver. She notes: "The thing that was hardest for me was that I missed simply talking to Mom. Every time I went to her home, I was bustling around, trying to get everything done in a rush. I never had time to simply sit down and talk with her as we used to. It became incredibly stressful."
If that sounds familiar to you, take heart. Home health care may provide you with much-needed relief. AARP notes: "Caregivers who get help are less likely to burn out and better able to provide long-term support for their parents."
How Home Health Care Can Help
Home health care workers can relieve much of the day-to-day strain of providing care for your loved one. Home care workers routinely provide senior care that includes:
- help with activities of daily living like bathing, grooming, toileting, and oral hygiene
- house cleaning and laundry service
- meal preparation
- medication support
- transportation to medical and social appointments
- companionship and social interaction
For your loved one, this means that needs are being addressed by friendly, compassionate professionals trained to handle the unique concerns of largely house-bound seniors.
You too can benefit from this arrangement. Working with a home care agency can provide you with peace of mind, knowing that your loved one is in good hands when you cannot be there. Additionally, because home care workers do many of the routine tasks that are so time-consuming for you, you have additional time to spend enjoying the company of your loved one when you visit.
Rather than rushing around in high-stress mode, you can spend some time really talking with your loved one and keeping the bonds of love you share healthy even when your senior's physical health may be declining. This is time well spent.
To re-route some of the routine tasks associated with caring for your senior to a qualified home care worker, contact us today. We will help you find the right professional for your family and give you the extra time you need to enjoy the companionship of your loved one for as long as possible in the comfort of home.