July 5, 2018
Being the primary caregiver for a loved one can be a rewarding experience; it can also be a difficult experience if you do not have any help. Primary caregivers frequently find that it can take a toll of their own personal health if they do not some form of help.
While there are a lot of options to get help for a loved one, an option that is overlooked far too often is respite care. Often, respite care is pushed to the side to allow for other services, including personal care services or other in-home services. These other services do provide assistance, but they do not offer the same relief as respite services.
Below are a few ways respite services can help you be a better caregiver for your loved one.
Like anything else, the repetition of being a primary caregiver can sap you of your energy. The responsibilities that come with being a primary caregiver can be constant and unrelenting, leaving you with little to no energy. While you may be able to continue to function, you will almost certainly be doing so at an unhealthy pace.
Respite care provides you with the time to re-energize by stepping away from your primary caregiver responsibilities for a period of time on a regular basis. This will allow you to provide the best care for your loved one and to recognize what it is you are doing.
Often times a primary caregiver will put their own needs and desires to the side. Over a long period of time, this can actually hurt the self-esteem and self-worth of a person. Respite care provides the time to continue to reach for your own goals and needs. When you are able to continue to accomplish things in your personal life, it makes you a better caregiver for your loved ones.
Without some time away from being a primary caregiver, it can be difficult to fully comprehend what it is you are doing. Not only can it give you perspective, but with time to reflect, you will also be able to analyze the care you are providing and possibly find more efficient ways of doing it or other resources available to you.
When it comes down to it, respite services allow you the time to step away from being a primary caregiver and to be yourself. It is a noble cause being a primary caregiver, but if you completely forget about your own personal needs, you will be doing your loved one and yourself a disservice.
Contact us at Easterseals Alaska to learn more about our respite services and how we can help you and your loved ones.