When your loved one has recently taken on the responsibility as a caregiver, you may feel guilty that you are not doing your part to help. Although the caregiving may be taken care of, you can still help out the caregiver. The key to successful caregiving is to make sure the caregiver is provided for and has the support he or she needs each week. Let us share a few ideas you can use to reduce the caregiver’s stress and help him or her avoid burnout.
1. Offer respite care. A caregiver does not get a day-off. Because of this, it’s easy for the caregiver to burn out quickly. Alleviate their stress by taking over their caregiving duties whenever you can. Offer to watch the senior, even if it is for just a few hours, to give the caregiver a bit of much needed time to rest and recharge.
2. Do their grocery shopping. Caregivers are busy all the time and rarely have the opportunity to grocery shop. Have them share their grocery list with you so you can do their grocery shopping. This simple action can take a tremendous burden off the caregiver.
3. Take over their chores instead of hiring someone. Yard work and house cleaning are tedious tasks that many caregivers prefer to pay someone to take care of. Help save them money by doing these chores for them. Water their grass, tend to their garden, mow the lawn, dust the furniture and vacuum. These small acts can save a lot of money as well as help diminish stress within your caregiver.
4. Make meals for them. While meal-kit delivery services are great for caregivers who have time to cook but don’t have time to grocery shop, that’s not always the case. For caregivers, time is a precious commodity. Many caregivers do not have time for either grocery shopping or meal preparation. Each week you can help by preparing meals for them that can be frozen and then reheated when ready to eat.
5. Schedule doctor’s visits you can attend. Although this is not always a possibility, you can give the caregiver a much needed break by taking the senior to his or her doctor appointment. Ask the caregiver what appointment he or she may not need to be present for and offer to attend. Be sure to get the list of questions he or she wants to have asked during the appointment.
Giving just an hour of your time each month can greatly help a caregiver in need. If you need more ideas or need to schedule a meeting with Attorney Allen Poucher, Jr., do not wait to contact us. Let us help you and your family with your long-term care planning.