Family Caregiver Tips

The Post-Pandemic Work-Life Balance: Here’s What Family Caregivers Can Expect

The Post-Pandemic Work-Life Balance: Here’s What Family Caregivers Can Expect If there is one particular positive after-effect of the pandemic, it is the appreciation generated for the plight of family caregivers. Managing work and home life has always been a tremendous challenge for people caring for a senior family member. As Lindsay Jurist-Rosner, CEO of Wellthy, explains, “Caregiving went from a silent struggle to being in the spotlight overnight.” Businesses were unexpectedly thrown into the fire of directing an environment of balancing the safety of staff along with the need to maintain productivity. Here is what we learned – and what we should expect for the future: More telecommuting. Individuals who began working from home in the last year have, in many cases, demonstrated their ability to be much more productive. Because of this, it is forecast that a large portion of the workforce will continue telecommuting at least several days per week this year. Decreased stress. Eliminating the daily commute opens up more time for self-care for family caregivers,…

Discover the Remarkable Benefits of Gardening for Seniors

Discover the Remarkable Benefits of Gardening for Seniors The cool dampness of rich soil. The warmth of the sun's rays. The joyous trills of songbirds. Gardening has the capacity to engage each of our senses, and the positive benefits of gardening for seniors are truly remarkable. No matter what the ability level or any space restrictions, there’s always a way to help senior loved ones experience the joys of planting outdoors or indoors, watching new growth appear, and harvesting. Spark interest (or renew interest) in the wonderful world of gardening for a senior you love, and discover: A brighter outlook on life. Research has discovered that in comparison to other hobbies, gardening is typically the winner in fighting stress levels and improving mood. Participants in the research study worked on a stress-inducing task, and were then instructed to either spend 30 minutes gardening outside or reading inside. Blood tests clearly showed a decreased level of cortisol – a stress hormone – in the gardening group. Increased strength, flexibility,…

Tips for New Family Caregivers That Really Help!

Tips for New Family Caregivers That Really Help! It might have come totally out of nowhere: an unanticipated fall that resulted in a broken hip and the need for Dad to have help and support to stay at home. Or, it may have been building up over time, such as through the slow and incremental progression of Alzheimer's disease. Regardless of the circumstances, you have now found yourself in the role of family caregiver, and perhaps are wondering just what this means and just how to navigate these new waters. We, at Amy’s Helping Hands, offer the following practical tips for new family caregivers. To begin with, take a deep breath, and a minute to acknowledge the selflessness of your decision. Caregiving is an extremely rewarding endeavor, however not without its struggles. A little proactive planning can go a long way towards a smoother transition to care, both for yourself and your family member. A great starting point is to figure out the way you would both like each day to unfold, creating a simple timeline to record the daily…

The Importance of Helping Seniors Maintain Dignity as They Age

The Importance of Helping Seniors Maintain Dignity as They Age It’s all too easy to get caught up in the everyday tasks of caregiving for an older adult you care about. There is so much to be done, and often it is just quicker and more efficient to do it all yourself, letting a loved one relax. After all, our elders have taken care of things for a lifetime; don’t they deserve a break? The reality, however, is that helping seniors maintain dignity as they age is exceedingly important. Retaining independence and dignity during our later years originates from having a feeling of purpose and meaning in life. Even though ensuring safety is, of course, paramount, there are ways to empower a senior loved one in your care to remain in control as much as possible. For instance: Work together on daily tasks. While standing at the sink and scrubbing dishes may be difficult or unsafe for your older loved one, maybe he or she can sit at the table and dry them. The senior might not be in the position to bake a cake from beginning to end but can mix ingredients…

Letting Go of Caregiver Guilt

Letting Go of Caregiver Guilt Family caregivers give so much of themselves to care for their loved ones, frequently surrendering their own individual needs and desires in the process. It seems normal to assume then that caregivers would feel great about themselves, with high self-esteem and sense of purpose.  Nevertheless, the reverse can be true, with many family caregivers dealing with thoughts and feelings of guilt, wishing they had more patience, a remedy for all of their senior loved ones’ dilemmas, or perhaps the power to accomplish everything by themselves without the need for assistance. They may have set unattainable and unrealistic guidelines, which often can lead to: Resentment  Feeling trapped Not feeling good enough Wanting to get away Loss of pleasure in life Heightened stress Missing out on good quality time with your loved one And more If you’re experiencing feelings of family caregiver guilt, taking these steps can be extraordinarily freeing: Admit your feelings of guilt and the specific reason…

What to Do When a Senior with Dementia Refuses to Change Clothes

What to Do When a Senior with Dementia Refuses to Change Clothes Caring for someone with Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia requires creativity, patience, and empathy, being able to step outside of your individual reasoning and logic and understand just why a specific behavior is occurring, and then to learn just how to effectively manage it. That’s certainly the situation with a loved one who refuses to change clothes, regardless of how dirty or unkempt an outfit has become. There are numerous reasons why an older adult with dementia may insist upon wearing exactly the same outfit, including: Judgment or memory problems, such as losing track of time or thinking the clothes were recently changed The comfort and familiarity of a particular piece of clothing A need to maintain control Problems with the task of changing clothes Feeling stressed from the choices associated with selecting an outfit Physical pain and/or fatigue The inability to identify scent and to clearly see stains on clothes Our dementia care team has some recommendations…

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