If you are in control of the majority of the care for older parents while your siblings distance themselves from caregiving, you are far from alone. In fact, 50 percent of all family caregivers are providing care for an elderly loved one alone, based on a recent report from AARP.
Knowing why this scenario is so commonplace – and figuring out what can you do to safeguard your own personal health, which can quickly be impacted by caring for a senior loved one on your own – is imperative. Our aging care professionals have the answers.
- They are afraid or uncomfortable. For someone who has never provided care for a senior family member, it may be truly overwhelming.
What you can do: Ask them to “shadow” you for a day to help them gain confidence with the specific activities that they are not comfortable with. A little hands-on training can make a big difference.
- Family members do not recognize there is a need for help. It may be that from the outside looking in, you have everything covered and running smoothly, and you are not in need of their support.
What you can do: Have a truthful, open conversation, outlining the stress you are under. Invite your brothers and sisters as well as other family members to come over to visit during a period of higher intensity care needs, like when you are making dinner and then helping the senior prepare for bed, and enlist their help so they are able to see firsthand how many tasks are involved.
- They don’t know what to do to help. Though it may seem like second nature to simply jump in and meet the senior’s needs, this is not the situation for everybody.
What you can do: Create a list of particular duties that you could use help with, along with the times and days that help and support are needed, and ask for volunteers.
How Can Home Care Help?
At Advanced Home Health Care, our experienced caregivers in Burlington, Fort Madison, Keokuk, and the nearby areas are always ready to work with you to meet the care needs of a senior loved one, with expertise, compassion, and reliability. Call us at 800.791.7785 and find out more about our in-home care services.