As we climb into 2021, the COVID crisis continues to present challenges for everyone. Caregivers, who are already overwhelmed and struggle with feelings of isolation, continue to push through, but the National Alliance for Caregiving says that today, caregivers are at an even greater risk for health, emotional, financial and work-related problems because of COVID related restrictions.
The stressors continue to pile up and more unpaid caregivers are in desperate need of respite care and support. One thing that hasn’t changed during the COVID pandemic is how important self-care is for caregivers.
"When you are the primary source of care for an elderly relative or a disabled adult or child, you probably feel like you are carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders. "
Five Rules Caregivers Need to Follow to Survive the Pandemic
- Rely on Convenience – One of the biggest stressors for caregivers is the health of the loved one they provide ongoing care for. With COVID-19 continuing into 2021, remove the stress of taking loved ones out in public by requesting telehealth appointments, getting prescriptions delivered to your home, and arrange grocery deliveries.
- Set Boundaries – Some people are not adhering to CDC suggestions regarding the pandemic so it is important to set boundaries where caregivers can control them. This might include setting boundaries with family members during the holidays, reminding neighbors not to “drop by” or moving in-home church groups online.
- Find Support – Options for support may feel like they have dwindled this year. However, there are still safe ways for caregivers to receive support. Respite care is provided by trained individuals who are taking every precaution to prevent exposure and contamination. In-home aides are still a safe option of support for caregivers. They can provide respite care in an emergency, companionship for loved ones, prepare meals safely and assist loved ones with tasks of daily living.
During the holiday season, direct support from in-home aides can significantly reduce stress to caregivers by taking on some of the responsibilities and freeing up caregivers’ time to take care of other holiday tasks.
- Sleep – Sleep is SO important. The amount of sleep caregivers get is going to significantly impact how they feel and how they are able to support those around them. Without proper sleep, caregivers will likely see a decrease in memory and the ability to handle and cope with stressors.
- Caregiver Resources – Take advantage of the many caregiver resources available. Caregivers will be exposed more directly to the world of caregiving and benefits for caregivers that they may not be aware of. Online support groups, financial assistance, medical care and much, much more is available to help ease the stress and pressure associated with providing full-time care and support to a loved one.
When you are the primary source of care for an elderly relative or a disabled adult or child, you probably feel like you are carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders. Ease the burden felt by so many caregivers around the United States by relying on services like in-home support aides to help.