November is National Caregiver Awareness Month, and with an estimated 44 million caregivers in the United States, it’s important to show support to these people who may feel overlooked or overwhelmed with the vital responsibility they hold. With these three tips, you can show support to caregivers and help alleviate the stress they may face.
Ask How You Can Help
Being a caregiver can be taxing, and like anything that requires around the clock attention, it can potentially lead to burnout. Asking how you can help, for a day or even a few hours, can go a long way. Even if it’s not stepping in to handle the caregiving duties, helping out in other ways like bringing food or doing household chores can lessen their workload and alleviate their stress. Always ask what is specifically needed to help them. Saying the generic statement of “let me know if I can do something for you” leaves the ball in their court, meaning they may never get back to you, but still need the help.
Make Sure They’re Caring for Themselves
When someone is dependent on another person for their care, it’s pertinent that the caregiver is healthy both physically and emotionally. A caregiver may make excuses as to why they can’t put their health and well-being first. However, it’s important they attend regularly scheduled doctor’s appointments, make time for physical activity and hobbies, and seek support through groups or counseling. Help them find solutions such as having a family member, friend, or community member come sit with the loved one while the caregiver is tending to their well-being.
Equip Them with the Proper Tools
Caregiving can be more than just emotionally draining, it can be physically draining as well. Having the right tools in the home can make the job a little easier. Installing ramps to a home’s entry points can eliminate strain when trying to help someone up a set of stairs. Adding a TILT® Toilet Incline Lift, can help a caregiver or loved one while in the bathroom. Other tools to help them do their job include the EZ-SHAMPOO® Hair Washing Basin, EZ-SHOWER Bedside Shower, and EZ-BATHE® Body Washing Basin. There are many ways you can show support for caregivers, even simply listening to them can be the most helpful thing to do. The work they do is incredibly important and can be stressful, so lending an attentive and understanding ear shows that you really do care.