From making sure medication is taken as directed to providing assistance with bathing, errands, and other daily tasks, the nearly 35 million people who care for adults aged 50 and older in the United States have a lot on their plates. While caring for an older family member can be a genuinely rewarding and mutually beneficial experience, there are still challenges family caregivers often face. Some of them are discussed below.
Time Management Issues
Finding the right balance between caregiving duties and personal obligations is a frequent challenge family caregivers face. This sometimes means sacrificing personal time, postponing vacations, and putting social obligations on the back burner. Asking other family members, friends, and neighbors who know your loved one well to help out now and then is one way to manage your time more efficiently while still having time for your own life.
Families who need help caring for a senior loved one can turn to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of senior care. Services available in our customizable care plans include meal prep, mental and social stimulation, assistance with personal hygiene tasks, and much more.
Physical and Emotional Stress
According to a joint study conducted by the National Alliance for Caregiving (NAC) and AARP, nearly a quarter of caregivers surveyed reported their care-related obligations had taken a toll on their health. The physical demands of family caregiving can include lifting, performing household tasks, and helping with mobility. Emotional stress, which can lead to depression and anxiety, can be even greater for caregivers whose loved ones have dementia-related conditions. Possible solutions include:
• Using assistive devices to help with mobility-related tasks or asking for help from other family members when doing more demanding physical tasks
• Learning how to meditate or perform other relaxation techniques that can be done whenever you have free time
• Joining an online or in-person support group for caregivers
• Learning more about your loved one’s condition if he or she has cognitive issues so you’ll know what to expect
Certain age-related conditions can make it more challenging for seniors to age in place safely and comfortably, but Flower Mound live-in care experts are available around the clock to help seniors manage their health. Whether your loved one is living with dementia or recovering from a stroke, you can trust the professional live-in caregivers from Home Care Assistance to enhance his or her quality of life.
Caregiving duties can be financially burdensome if you’re trying to divide your time between a paying job and providing care to a family member. According to AARP, the IRS allows a family caregiver to claim certain expenses if an adult loved one becomes a dependent. Some states also offer tax credits that may ease financial strain. Flexible spending accounts (FSAs) and health savings accounts (HSAs) are some other options AARP suggests.
Lack of sleep is a big issue for some family caregivers. This is more likely to happen if your loved one has reached a point where his or her sleep-wake cycle is off, which may result in your being called on for assistance during hours of the day when you normally sleep. In addition to making you less patient with your loved one, sleep deprivation can contribute to weight gain, chronic pain, and other health issues. If your loved one isn’t sleeping on a normal schedule, talk to the doctor about possible solutions.
Families who need help caring for a senior loved one can turn to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of Flower Mound elder care. Services available in our customizable care plans include meal prep, mental and social stimulation, assistance with personal hygiene tasks, and much more. If you need compassionate, professional care for your loved one, call one of our friendly Care Managers today at (972) 468-6010.