Caregivers assist a person who has either long- or short-term limitations due to aging, illness, injury or disability. Many caregivers are close family members providing care to elderly family members at the expense of their own health and wellbeing.

When caring for an older adult, you can be left feeling overwhelmed and exhausted. Lack of time for self-care, emotional and physical stress, sleep deprivation, depression, and isolation are just some of the challenges a caregiver may face.

Often, caregivers are so busy caring for the needs of others that they neglect their own needs. Many caregivers experience high levels and significant symptoms of depression and anxiety. Caregivers are under unique and difficult challenges, and are often left feeling angry, frustrated, drained, and helpless. As caregiving can sometimes become a 24/7 or “on call” job, caregivers lose their sense of identity, and struggle to maintain relationships, hobbies, and self-esteem.

The effects of caregiving are not just harmful for the mental health of caregivers. Research has found that caregiving can have consequences on physical health as well. Caregivers have been found to have lower levels of health and well-being, and caregivers reported experiencing chronic conditions, including cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and arthritis, at nearly twice the rate of non-caregivers.

As many families struggle to care for others, it’s important for them to be sure to take care of themselves as well. Caregiver stress can take many forms. Some signs and symptoms include mood swings, feeling isolated or alone, having trouble sleeping, losing interest in things you used to enjoy, or having headaches, body aches, and other physical pains more often. If you begin to feel this way, it’s important to speak with a trusted healthcare professional, and take steps to lower your stress levels.

A trusted geriatric care manager can help provide relief. Whether you need help with care for daily living activities, chronic illness, cognitive or mental health issues, or have specialized care requirements for disabilities, our team is experienced and ready to help find the best care options for you and your needs. A personalized care plan can help find the right situation for you and your aging loved one.

If you or someone in your family are facing aging challenges, please give us a call at 803-215-1019 or email us at info@longtermliaisons.com. We’ll be happy to assist!