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June 2016 Newsletter

Who Is Taking Care of the Caregiver???

Cup

Dementia is one of the most expensive and time-consuming health conditions to care for in the U.S. 80% of adults with dementia live at home. Unpaid family members provide the majority of care. 

Here are some additional staggering statistics:

  • 33% of caregivers assisting a person with dementia are unpaid
  • An individual with dementia requires an average of 55 hours of care per week
  • More than 27% spend between $5000-$19,999 on out of pocket expenses per year for the care of a person with dementia
     

Support for caregivers is critical. Here’s what can be done.

  1. Explore financial assistance options and eligibilities.
  2. Utilize in home paid assistance from those trained in dementia care.
  3. Find out about local day care
  4. Learn about the variety of community services
  5. Utilize respite care
  6. Get caregiver training

If you need guidance and resources tailored to your specific situation, contact me. I’m here to help.

 

What’s the buzz about caregiver fatigue?

Exhausted

With all the responsibilities confronting caregivers along with balancing work, family, social and other responsibilities, it’s not uncommon to get overwhelmed and burnt out. This is now referred to as “caregiver fatigue”. Often caregivers get so involved in caregiving that they hit a breaking point. Here are some common signs of caregiver fatigue:

  •  Constant state of being tired
  • Sense of hopelessness
  • Health issues
  • Physical symptoms
  • Depression
  • Retreating from others and activities

Working caregivers can experience an understandable impact at their job. Signs often include:

  •  Increased absenteeism
  • Inability to complete assignments and tasks
  • Inability to meet deadlines
  • Strong reluctance toward change

For many, caregiving is a full time job and for many a second job. If you are a caregiver, it is critical to find ways to sustain yourself. The following are fundamentals that I stress with the caregivers I assist:

Let go of needing to be “the perfect caregiver” and focus on being a loving caregiver

Learn to delegate

Ask for and accept help

Get time away from caregiving 

If you need linkages to day programs, short term respite facilities, or in home care agencies with aides experienced in caring for individuals with dementia, contact me.

 Father’s Day Gifts For Caregivers

Fathers Day

In last month’s newsletter I offered suggested gift ideas for Mom’s who are caregivers. Link here. Many of these gifts surely will be welcomed by Dads, but thinking about the different challenges that many male caregivers face, here are additional gift ideas for that super hero, Dad:

 A Second Set of Hands- hire outside assistance to supplement Dad’s caregiving responsibilities

Meals- bring prepared meals that can be served or frozen for future use

Cleaning Service- hire a regularly scheduled cleaning service

Emotional Support- go with Dad to a monthly caregiver support group

Time Out- get tickets for Dad and another family member or friend to go to a sports, recreational or cultural event.

Father’s Day Gifts- should help to unburden the responsibilities of caregiving. It’s helpful when conveying your gratitude to share that there is no perfect caregiver, only a loving caregiver.

 Want to brainstorm more ideas for a meaningful Father’s Day gift specific to your someone special? Contact me.

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