As a caregiver to a loved one with dementia, you are often looked upon as a superhero—a family member capable of doing it all. Yet, even superheroes get support from their sidekicks. Creating a support system – comprised of other family members, friends, co-workers and professional caregivers – is an integral part of providing quality dementia care. As you continue down the path of caregiving, consider these five reasons to build a support system along the way.
- Caregivers need to take care of themselves. Even though you may find yourself in the middle of everything from insurance problems and medical appointments to grocery shopping and laundry, you still need to make time for yourself. Whether it’s running an errand or spending 30 minutes at the hair salon, you must take care of your own needs in order to fully invest in the needs of another. Having family and friends available to help support you as you take care of yourself is a necessity.
- Caregivers can’t do it all. It may be hard to hear, but it’s impossible to do it all. Caregivers are often juggling the needs of a growing family alongside the needs of their elderly loved one, and often items can slip through the cracks. Having a reliable support system ensures the important things are never left undone.
- Caregivers need to blow off steam. There will be times when you’ll simply have had enough. Whether it’s frustration at your loved one or anger directed towards the system, you will need to occasionally blow off steam in order to continue. A good support system is there for you to listen without judgment while offering a different viewpoint to help you see the bigger picture.
- Caregivers need time off. Occasionally, you will need time to decompress and take a weekend away. Whether it is six months down the road or two years, there will be an occasion where you need to spend time away from your elderly loved one. You shouldn’t feel guilty about this need. By creating a support system that includes professional dementia caregivers, you can feel confident in their capabilities to assist your loved one with dementia during the time you are away.
- Your loved one needs a break too. Even the closest family members need time apart. You take care of your loved one’s every need and are privy to their intimate information. On occasion, your loved one may enjoy spending downtime with another individual. Your support system can provide a back-up when those occasions occur.
Support systems are the backbone of being a successful caregiver. As hard as it may be to ask for help, realize others want to help and support you as much as you want to support your loved one.
To learn more about professional support services near you, reach out to Home Care Assistance of Centennial. We provide home care Centennial families trust, and are proud to serve the local community as well as the South Metro Denver area. Call us at 303-957-3100 and request your complimentary, no-obligation consultation, and find out how our specialty dementia care plans are promoting quality of life for seniors and peace of mind for their families.