Family caregivers are the ones who take care of those who need help the most. Be it for professional or personal reasons, they regularly take on difficult responsibilities so that the ones under their care can lead a better life or recover faster. These are also the same individuals who spend multiple hours of their day taking care of someone in the family so that others can spend more time doing what they need to or want to.
As you can imagine, it takes a lot of determination to continue doing what they do, for many years. Unfortunately, signs of caregiver burnout are far too common because of the inherent stress that comes with their responsibilities.
Caregivers have Human Limits Too
When a caregiver starts to lose hope and energy, everyone under their care also begins to suffer simultaneously. Once the individual is completely burnt out, their absence is instantly felt, not just by the people who were under their care, but also everyone else around them as well. They are, after all, only human, and like all human beings, loss of hope and happiness can burn out even the most motivated people among us. Therefore, the question is this: who takes care of the caregiver when they need help?
The Answer is “You”
Only you can care for the people who have dedicated their own lives to helping others. You can help caregivers by providing them with opportunities to take breaks, destress, relax, and care for their own physical and mental well-being every once in a while. You can also take a step further and extend a caring hand to caregivers in their time of need.
How Can You Help?
Hope Grows is one of the few non-profit organizations in Pennsylvania that’s exclusively dedicated to helping caregivers locally and remotely. Their programs and respite house help caregivers deal with aspects such as:
- Stress management and relaxation
- Compassion fatigue reduction
- Finding and maintaining a life-work balance
- Improving physical and psychological wellbeing
- Burnout management and energy restoration.
If you can empathize with any of what they do for caregivers, then donate to help caregivers find that bit of respite they so often need but cannot afford without assistance.
You Can Do More to Make Caregivers Feel Comfortable
Appreciation plays a huge role in keeping family caregivers motivated. When caregivers feel appreciated for their efforts, it reinforces their core belief that what they do really matters to people. Treat them with the respect they deserve and let them know that their actions are not going unnoticed. Even the simple act of trying to make a caregiver laugh is often enough to send the message that they are indeed appreciated.
When you order food for the family, do not exclude them from the order and pretend like the person does not exist. It’s possible they may not wish to, want to, or need to eat what you are ordering, but just the act of asking with insistence shows that you care about them.
Remember, looking after caregivers means everyone benefits.