3 Ways to Support Caregivers This Month
You might already know that November is Alzheimer’s Awareness Month, but it’s also National Family Caregivers Month. According to the American Geriatrics Society, 65% of those who care for adults 65 and older are unpaid family or friends. (1) Unpaid caregivers are also more likely to have depression, anxiety, and other health conditions due to the demands caregivers face. (2) While caregiver burnout is on the rise, there are also ways to keep it at bay, whether you know a caregiver, receive help from a caregiver, or currently care for a loved one. Here are three ways to support family caregivers this month and year round.
1. Get other family members and friends involved so that caregiving doesn’t fall on just one or two people. Sit down together, generate ideas, and write a list of responsibilities and tasks that can be spread out. Then, use the list to help decide who can best help you with certain tasks, depending on who is available. Having it all in writing also keeps everyone accountable and organized.
2. Encourage primary caregivers to take a break. Whether it’s a night off or a weekend away, a respite stay can go a long way for everyone involved. It’s also easier to have a friend or family member step in for a few days if they’re already familiar with some of the caregiving responsibilities (which is another reason to get other caregivers involved).
3. Tap into the resources that can help you and your caregiver navigate everything like managing medications, finances, knowing which benefits you’re eligible for, and more.
Depending on your state, there could be a number of programs, services, financial aid, and other resources that you and your caregiver may be eligible for.
This tool makes it easier to find out which benefits you may qualify for like assistance paying for medications, groceries, and more.
Whether you’re managing your finances independently or you have help from a caregiver or relative, it helps to have everything organized, and this checklist makes it easier.
For tutorials and advice on wound care, mobility safety, how to transfer from a car to a wheelchair, and other medical/nursing responsibilities, check out the how-to videos from AARP’s Home Alone Alliance Initiative.
At Benchmark, caregivers are truly vital to our community, and we’re here to support all of them. If you or your loved one ever feel overwhelmed or could use additional care, we provide a range of customizable care options including short-term respite care stays. Learn more about how we can help below.
(1) Source: American Geriatrics Society
(2) Source: CDC Caregiving Report