Caregivers need care too

Image: Caregivers need care too

In Canada, over 8 million people provide care to a chronically ill or disabled loved one.

Being a caregiver to your spouse, parent, sibling, relative, neighbour or friend is rewarding but can also be very challenging. The daily duties of looking after your loved one's needs may often lead to stress, anxiety and burnout. Burnout, which is a state of mental, emotional and physical exhaustion, is often caused by prolonged caregiving duties and responsibilities. Here are some helpful caregiving tips to keep in mind:

  • Think of caregiving as a job like any other, take time off and make time for yourself
  • When people offer to help, accept their offer and suggest specific ways in which they can assist you
  • Educate yourself about your loved one's condition and how to advocate on his or her behalf with the health care system
  • Caregivers have to do a lot of lifting, pushing and pulling. Take care of your back, make time to exercise
  • Seek support from other caregivers, either locally or online. Create a circle of support
  • Stand up for your rights as a caregiver, and for the rights of your loved one

Having the right caregiver support to assist you and your family is important in order for you to be the best caregiver you can be. Here are some tips and personal stories about caregiving that you may find helpful:

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