Caregivers Need Care Too

imagesCARXP9VKThe primary caretaker of an elderly patient or disabled patient is almost always a family member, typically a parent, child or sibling. Often this task is dropped in the lap of the family member unexpectedly and then they have the daunting task of taking care of that patient 24/7. The family member may have a family of their own to take care of, may have a career or full time job, and may not be able to provide everything the patient needs at all times. This is not to say they don’t try! Caregivers of the elderly and disabled are quite heroic in their efforts to give their stricken family member a life worth living.

Over time, though, care at this level can grind a person down in many ways. Stress levels can be extremely high when trying to balance all of the demands of this lifestyle. In addition, as the elderly or handicapped family member ages, they require more and more help and demand more and more of the caregiver’s attention. The caregivers are not trained in these areas of caregiving and may end up breaking down emotionally from the demands this role can put on a person.imagesCA00NTGS

It is clear that primary caretakers need to take breaks along the way for their own well-being and for the well-being of those around them. These short term breaks are called ‘respite care’ and are geared toward helping the caregiver recover from the constant stress of taking care of another human being. We provide respite care for primary caregiver families so that they can take vacations or take care of any problems with their own families or careers.

Respite care is usually short term and limited, but gives the primary caregiver peace of mind for that time so that they can rejuvenate. This type of assistance is known to decrease neglect and abuse and also helps delay putting the elderly or disabled family member in a residential facility. Caregiving is a full time job and may be the second or third full time job of the caregiving family member. Respite care can be an oasis, an island in a storm, for those taking on this monumental task..

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