As a senior living community, we know summer can be demanding for family caregivers. With finer weather often comes an uptick in social family events, and the extra time spent with a senior loved one may highlight how their needs have changed over the past year.
When your loved one’s needs have increased, you may feel like you’re spreading yourself too thin to keep up – often called ‘caregiver burnout.’ If you’re struggling with burnout, considering assisted living may benefit you and the senior you care for.
Here are five signs that you might be experiencing caregiver burnout.
Your physical health is suffering.
If you have caregiver burnout, you might feel low on energy or catch colds and flu more frequently. If your loved one requires a great deal of physical assistance each day with things like getting in and out of bed, showering, or moving around the home, you might also notice increased muscle aches and pains. These physical symptoms of burnout may be even more pronounced if you have a chronic physical health condition.
You’re finding it hard to stay positive.
The health implications of being a family caregiver aren’t all physical. The mental strain of caregiving can be just as (if not more) challenging. If you’ve noticed yourself feeling increasingly anxious or irritable or having feelings of depression, hopelessness, or guilt, you might be experiencing caregiver burnout.
You’re struggling to sleep.
There are many reasons why being a family caregiver might impact your sleep schedule. Perhaps you’re feeling anxious about your loved one’s health and safety during the night, wondering what the future might hold, or worrying about your ability to provide adequate care. Alternatively, you might be too busy and overwhelmed with caregiving and other responsibilities, leaving you late, waking up very early, or finding it hard to switch off in the evenings.
And while sleep is often the first thing sacrificed to create extra time, it’s crucial for maintaining physical and mental health. A healthy sleep schedule may lower your risk of physical illnesses, including coronary heart disease, obesity, and high blood pressure while protecting your mental well-being, immunity, and ability to focus on tasks.
You feel isolated from your social circles.
As your aging relative’s care needs change, you might sacrifice the social and recreational activities you love. Being connected to a supportive social circle is a key contributor to positive emotional well-being and can nurture feelings of self-esteem and belonging. What’s more, life as a family caregiver can be physically, mentally, and emotionally challenging, and having the ability to talk things through with others is often highly beneficial.
You need more patience when caring for your family member.
Many family caregivers feel guilty for becoming irritable when caring for a senior relative. However, frustration is a common stress response, and it certainly doesn’t mean you love them any less. If you’re feeling rushed or overwhelmed by piling responsibilities and unfinished tasks, it’s only human to feel a little impatient sometimes. While it’s normal to feel irritable occasionally, frequent feelings of impatience or frustration suggest you use some extra support.
Still, trying to decide whether you need support as a family caregiver? Ask yourself the following questions and consider your answers. If you need help to remain objective, ask a relative or close friend who knows you well to help.
Are you feeling tired, drained, and low on energy?
Are you getting sick more often than usual?
Are you struggling with muscle aches and pains?
Are you having feelings of anxiety, depression, or hopelessness?
Are you seeing friends or family members as much as you want?
Are you getting quality sleep every night, and do you wake up feeling well-rested?
Are you becoming impatient with the loved one you care for?
Do you need to improve your ability to provide the right level of care?
If you have any mental or physical symptoms causing concern, consult your physician for further advice.
How can Senior Living Help Family Caregivers?
When considering assisted living senior care, it can be tempting to focus solely on the benefits for seniors themselves. Moving to assisted living can be incredibly beneficial for seniors and family caregivers. As a family caregiver, you deserve to feel secure knowing that your loved one is always safe, and their needs are met even when you’re not around. You should be able to enjoy your own free time, stay connected to friends and family, and have space to nurture your mental and physical well-being.
Seniors in assisted living communities can remain independent while having access to organized activities, great social groups, nutritious meals, and activities of daily living (ADL) support tailored to their needs. With extra support available to meet your loved ones’ physical, social, and emotional needs, you can benefit from a better life balance. Ultimately, this will give you time to focus on making memories with your parent or loved one, free from the stresses of being solely responsible for their care.
The Benefits of Moving to Argent Court Assisted Living Include:
A calendar of activities coordinated by onsite activity managers.
Gourmet, chef-prepared meals, including residents’ favorites, served each day.
Great, convenient amenities, including a laundry service and a beauty salon.
We’re happy to accommodate small pets and understand the value of the companionship they offer.
Use the contact form or give us a call to speak to a member of our friendly team and arrange a guided tour today.