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Every caregiver needs a break - help is available

By Linda Waggener

At the Adair County monthly Caregivers meeting Wednesday the question came up as to how a lone caregiver can even take a break for the meeting. Sometimes the caregiver is the only one available. The group had answers for help, just click "comments" below this article and I can send contact information.

Respite is time off, time away, a much-needed time for a caregiver. It's relying on someone else, whether a friend, relative, volunteer or professional, who can fill in for you and give you some time to yourself -- because your wellness should be priority number one.

Don't wait until you become very depressed or very ill. Arrange it now for a few hours at least once a week.

Unfortunately, according to a National Respite Coalition survey, most caregivers don't realize they're in need of respite care until it's too late. Only a small percentage of a National Alliance for Caregiving members actually used respite care. When they did, it was because of a health crisis or another emergency.

The problem is that they don't see themselves as caregivers, but as spouses, mothers or sisters whose obligation it is to care for someone. They don't see themselves as entitled to a break.

If you are a caregiver, you need time away just as any worker needs a vacation from the daily stress of his or her job, according to the National Caregivers Association. It's a break that renews you.

The ideal respite is to go somewhere else so you're not in the same environment. That's the best way to clear your head. It gives a little bit of your life back.

This story was posted on 2022-10-13 07:21:43
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