AlzU Blog

Tip for Dealing with Caregiver Burnout Part I

When caregivers of those with Alzheimer’s disease (AD) take on the responsibility of a loved one without regularly scheduled time off periods, it’s a recipe for disaster resulting in caregiver stress and burnout.

Family members of those with AD need to learn how to ask for help.  Whether it’s asking a friend, a neighbor or hiring a professional respite service, caregivers really need regular time out periods to maintain a beneficial level of mental and physical health.

Don’t expect people to read your mind, it’s a caregiver’s job to talk to others and ask for help when feeling stressed out and/or overwhelmed.  Make an attempt to keep family members in the loop and enlist help on an ongoing basis-not before built up tension and stress has already paid a toll on your mental and physical health.

Consider using volunteers for respite care if paid help is out of the question.  There are many online resources offering free help with Alzheimer’s-when it comes to getting respite care in the home.  Church volunteers are another viable option to get help with Alzheimer’s care.

Practice giving up control, you can’t micro-manage every aspect of care for a loved one with AD-particularly in the later stages of the disease.  Learning to delegate is vital to a caregiver’s long term health and well-being.

When someone offers help, say yes.  Prepare a list of small tasks that others can easily help with (such as running errands or picking up groceries).  Don’t be afraid to give up control-you can’t manage every single task required in the course of caregiving for a loved one with AD. 

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