Stress is pretty much a given when you’re a caregiver. There are so many aspects of caregiving that contribute mightily to giving you ever more stress. But even with all of that, there’s a lot that you can do to manage your stress levels.
Move at Least a Little Bit Every Day
Exercise is vital because it works your muscles, strengthens your bones, and can even help your brain and body to get rid of stress. It can help you to sleep better and can stimulate your appetite for healthy foods. If you haven’t exercised in a long time, it’s a good idea to check with your doctor to make sure that you’re safe to exercise. From there, start moving a little bit every day. That might mean stretching some days or full cardio workouts other days.
Make Healthy Food Choices
What you eat is really important. It can even be more important than how often or how much you eat. You need to avoid junk foods or foods that don’t give you much nutritive value. Your doctor might recommend vitamins or supplements, but eating healthier foods is going to automatically bump up the nutrition that you’re getting. Add healthier choices gradually so that you don’t feel like you’re missing out.
Visit Your Doctor, Even if You Don’t Want To
If you haven’t already been to your doctor, make an appointment. You can’t possibly take care of someone else if your own health is out of control. It’s time to get a handle on whatever might be going on with your own health so that you can focus on your senior and her health.
Revamp Your Sleep Routine
You probably already know that you feel lousy if you aren’t sleeping well. The thing is, sleep affects not only your physical health and well-being, but it also affects your mental and emotional well-being, too. Try going to bed a little bit earlier each night and make sure that you’re avoiding screens and anything that could be contributing to keeping you awake. As you start paying more attention to what you’re eating and to moving more, you may find that your sleep habits naturally clear up.
When you master these steps, you can start to add more advanced options to your self-care scenario, like regularly taking breaks from caregiving. Eventually you’ll learn what works best for you when you’re managing your stress levels.
If you or an aging loved one are considering caregivers in West Trenton, NJ, please call the caring staff at Care Street Home Care. You can reach our Mercer/Burlington Division at (609) 496-5666.
Dr. Shelly, as he is fondly known, has served as an Alzheimer’s Support Group Facilitator in Mercer County and is a Certified Dementia Instructor. Knowledgeable, compassionate, and unusually devoted, his guidance is crucial in helping families understand their options and render decisions for their loved ones’ care plan. Dr. Shelly’s extensive experience, sincere and pleasant demeanor, and professional affiliations have made him a vital asset to Care Street.