Elderly adults experience a decline in physical and mental abilities, which makes them slightly dependent on their children or professional caregivers for their daily life. Caregiving is a demanding process, especially for people who are not specially trained for the task. And the stresses that build up with taking care of your loved one can lead to a burnout which is detrimental to your own live and to the lives of everyone dependent on you. Taking care of yourself, therefore, is not a luxury but a necessity when it comes to caregiving.
Spreading the responsibility
More often than not, only one sibling is given the responsibility to take care of their aging parents. Spreading the responsibility is vital to the benefit of your loved ones as your aging parents may require help with a variety of activities which you may not be able to perform all by yourself. Start a dialogue with your family members and involve them in the caregiving process regardless of their differences in age, experience, financial capability or location. Relinquish some of the control you have over the tasks you perform and allow others to contribute in their own way whenever they can.
Taking care of yourself
Although you may be facing a tight schedule, you need to find the time to take care of yourself. Take some time out to do things that you enjoy and visit your friends regularly so that you can share your feelings with them. Also ensure that you invest time and effort in exercise, eating the right food and getting adequate sleep. You may even use the help of nearby family members and friends to run errands or look after your elderly parents for some time so that you can take a well deserved break from the daily routine.