A recent study discovered that most caregivers spent an average of 20 hours a week caring for a family member or close friend, and nearly 70 percent of caregivers used some portion of their own funds to support their loved one.
With November being National Family Caregivers Month, we knew there was no better time to show our appreciation for these unsung heroes of the medical world by sharing a few ways they can also ensure their own health and happiness.
Know that it’s okay to take a break or ask for help.
In any other job, it’s perfectly normal to ask a colleague for help if you’re feeling overwhelmed. But caregivers don’t always have the luxury of turning to someone else when times get tough. Though it can be difficult, ask a family member to help you from time-to-time or consider hiring an aid to either live in the home or make occasional visits.
Know when you’ve reached your limit.
It’s important that you don’t sacrifice your own mental and physical health for a loved one. If you’re feeling excessively tired, upset, or anxious, let a family member, doctor, or therapist know.
Join a support group.
The best way to never reach your limit all together is to join a support group the moment you become a caregiver. This will give you a group of people who truly understand what you’re going through and can offer sage advice.
Keep a journal.
Many people find it helpful to write down the things that are affecting them, either positively or negatively. Putting your thoughts on paper is a great way to organize and understand them.
Like we mentioned before, caregivers spend an average of 20 hours a week tending to their loved ones, on top of their part or full-time jobs and families. Making it a priority to spend time with friends and loved ones who bring you joy is important for maintaining your mental health.
We know how important your loved ones are to you, that’s why at Orthopaedic Specialty Group, we treat our patients the same way you would treat them. As the largest and most experienced orthopedic practice in southern Connecticut, our expert team of doctors can fix virtually every bone and joint in you or your loved one’s body. Schedule an appointment online, or call us at (203) 337-2600.