Easing the Burden of Spousal Carers

You care well for your ill, disabled or ageing spouse, but is your own health slipping? Spousal caregivers are at risk for stress-related conditions including anxiety, depression, headaches, backaches and sleep deprivation. Eventually, care for an ailing loved one can lead to burnout in which you are depleted physically, mentally and emotionally.

Yet hesitations can arise over enlisting a professional caregiving service for help. After managing the care for so long, you may find it difficult to relinquish your home caregiver duties to someone else. Or, you may struggle with guilt for no longer being able to provide the necessary care. Sometimes it is a challenge to recognize that someone else can oversee your spouse's health as well as you can.

Securing the help of a professional home caregiver is not a sign of weakness or giving up on the ailing family member, nor is asking for at-home care being selfish. Instead, hiring a trained caregiving service is actually showing greater love and concern for your spouse receiving care.

To encourage professional in-home care support, other family members and friends may help you best by:

  • Reaffirming that it's okay to recharge. As a spousal caregiver, you need to refresh your own overall health.Respite breaks are excellent for getting exercise, seeing a movie or lingering with a friend over coffee.
  • Helping investigate home healthcare options. It is important to select a reputable, experienced in-home care provider like Right at Home. Asking pertinent questions of potential in-home care services is vital.
  • Involving your ailing loved one in care decisions. As much as possible, invite the care recipient to weigh in on professional caregiving choices.
  • Assisting with setting limits. Spousal caregivers often find it hard to say "no" and to let go of some home and care duties. It is better for everyone when you, as the caregiving spouse, ease up on unrealistic to-do lists.

What benefits do you perceive in seeking the professional help of an adult home care service?

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