There’s Help for Caregiver Stress

Senior-Health-Update-Dans-Wellness-Newsletter-January-2016There is little doubt that the stress of chronic caregiving for a spouse or family member has significant effects on one’s health.  Some signs of caregiver stress are:

  • Feeling overwhelmed, lonely, guilty, sad or constantly worried
  • Feeling fatigued most of the time
  • Becoming easily irritated or angered
  • Lack of interest in activities you previously enjoyed
  • Significant change in weight or sleep habits
  • Frequent headaches, neck or low back pain
  • Abuse of alcohol or drugs

You can help reduce your stress as a caregiver:

  • Identify what you can and cannot change. You may not be able to alter the way somebody else behaves but you can change how you react to it.
  • Try to lighten your load by learning about local caregiving resources such as meal delivery, home healthcare services (nursing, physical therapy), non-medical assistance (housekeeping, cooking, companionship) or home-modification changes that make it easier for patients to bathe, use the toilet or move around.
  • Don’t hesitate to ask for and to accept assistance from friends and family.

–Source:  The American Institute of Stress