6 Things That Indicate You Might Be Experiencing Caregiver Burnout

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Caregivers who go from happy to sad or from caring to unconcerned could be facing physical, mental, and emotional exhaustion, which is known as caregiver burnout. Failing to get the help they need could have serious health consequences. Here are some of the common signs of caregiver burnout and how to address each symptom.

1. Fatigue

Taking on too much without asking for assistance could lead to exhaustion. Ask other siblings and family members to assist with your senior parent’s care, or consider hiring a professional caregiver to come in on an hourly basis. Receiving help with your caregiving duties minimizes the number of tasks you do each day, allowing you to spend more time resting and practicing self-care.

2. Weight Fluctuation

Many caregivers fail to get the nutrition their bodies need due to lack of interest or time. The financial responsibilities of caring for a senior loved one could also lead to constant worry and result in overeating or hunger. Find out what financial resources are available to assist your loved one, such as meal preparation, transportation, and companionship services. These resources could free up some of your time and money to focus on your physical health, which includes consuming nutritious meals and exercising. 

If your senior loved one has been diagnosed with a serious condition and needs help with tasks like meal prep, transportation, bathing, and grooming, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of home care Richmond, VA, families can trust. We also offer comprehensive care for seniors with dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.

3. Isolation

Isolation can have a devastating effect on quality of life and lead to chronic stress. However, maintaining a social life allows you to get out of the house and interact with other people who share your interests and goals in life.

4. Irritability

Negative responses to every question or feelings of anger and irritability are often a sign of caregiver burnout. To address this issue, consider taking an extended break away from caregiving. You can go on a trip to clear your mind or stay at home and get the rest your body needs. While on an extended break, don’t do anything related to caregiving. Instead, focus on your own goals and self-care needs.

5. Substance Abuse

Some family caregivers turn to alcohol, drugs, and other substances to manage the negative side of caregiving. They use the substances to enhance their mood and energy. However, drugs and alcohol only provide a temporary boost, so when the effects wear off, you’re likely to feel worse. You need to have a full support team of people you can talk to on a regular basis, such as a family caregiver support group or a mentor. 

Make sure you also have support from a professional in-home caregiver who can help your loved one maintain a high quality of life while allowing you to take a break. Families who need help caring for a senior loved one can turn to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of Richmond home care. Services available in our customizable care plans include meal prep, mental and social stimulation, assistance with personal hygiene tasks, and much more.

6. Depression

Constant worry and feelings of doubt can lead to depression. It’s essential to do your best, but remember you’re only one person. Instead of setting unrealistic goals, remain optimistic and realistic. Cherish the time you have with your loved one and make lasting memories.

Family caregivers need to care for their own wellbeing. If you’re caring for an aging loved one and are feeling overwhelmed, consider hiring a professional caregiver to provide respite care. Richmond families who want to prevent burnout can turn to Home Care Assistance. One of our professional caregivers can assist your loved one at home while you take a nap, go to work, run errands, or go on vacation. If you’d like to learn more about our in-home respite care, please call one of our friendly Care Managers today at Richmond (804) 741-0009 or Williamsburg (757) 220-3151 to schedule a complimentary consultation.