Your Caregiver Needs a Break Too: How Respite Care Can Help
We have a lot to thank doctors and nurses for—because of their efforts, many can live beyond their supposed time limit, and others can have a better quality of life despite their conditions. While medical professionals are partly responsible for what society has become, none can disregard the contributions of caregivers to healthcare.
The Importance of Caregivers
Caregivers play an integral role in a person’s physical and emotional health. Being tasked with 24/7 care, they are responsible for providing support and encouragement to people who can no longer look after themselves due to illness, age, or disability. Caregivers, in essence, give care to those who need it.
People who work as caregivers are expected to:
- Be an Advocate
When a person cannot or will not speak for themself, a caregiver will be responsible for maintaining honest communication between the doctor and the patient by upholding their preferences for treatment options.
- Provide Personal Care
Caregivers will help with daily activities, such as bathing, dressing, and toileting.
- Perform Household Tasks
Besides looking after the patient, caregivers will also be responsible for preparing meals, doing chores, grocery shopping, and managing finances.
- Manage Medical Care
Caregivers don’t do as much as doctors or nurses. Still, they will be in charge of some medical tasks, such as maintaining medical records, administering or monitoring medication, providing transportation to appointments, and assisting with some medical processes.
The Challenges Caregivers Face
Unlike other jobs that only require you to work for 40 hours a week, with the occasional overtime, working as a caregiver requires one to dedicate all of their time to meet the needs of another person. It’s crucial to keep in mind that caregivers are also human themselves, just like your loved one that they are looking after.
Caregivers have their limitations in the same way as you or other people do. Having less time for themselves and looking after someone every waking minute can take a toll on their health, causing physical and emotional stress. Once the burden becomes too heavy, the caregiver will no longer be able to perform their duties, leaving your loved one without anyone to look after them.
Easing the Burden with Respite Care
Although rewarding, caring for someone else can drain a lot of energy and increase stress levels. Everybody needs to have a healthy balance in their life—and that includes caregivers too! Transferring primary caregiving responsibilities to another person for a while will provide temporary relief to your loved one’s caregiver.
Also known as patient sitters, respite workers can care for your loved one to give the caregiver a temporary respite from their job. Some of the responsibilities of respite workers include:
- Providing assistance, companionship, and comfort
- Administering medications and monitoring vital signs
- Assessing the physical, mental, and emotional health
- Assisting with mobility, personal hygiene, eating, and drinking
- Accompanying on appointments and outings
- Performing household tasks
Depending on what you and your loved one decide on, respite care can take place in your home, at special day-care centers, or hospice facilities in your area. You can schedule respite care for a more extended period if your caregiver needs a longer break or vacation.
Caregivers are crucial to maintaining the physical, mental, and social health of your loved one, but you mustn’t forget to allow them to look after themselves, too! By hiring respite services in your area, you can give your loved one’s caregiver their much-needed break to improve their health. After some time away, they can return feeling more relaxed, refreshed, and ready to fulfill their duties once again.
Does your caregiver plan to take a break? Leave it to our respite workers at Morristown HC to care for your loved one! We provide respite services in Morristown, guaranteeing various amenities and services for our short-term residents. Call 973-540-9800 to learn more!