Aging Well

Family Caregiving

Caregiving is among the greatest gifts we can give a loved one, but it can also be one of the most demanding. In order to avoid burnout, it’s important for caregivers to ask for support and make their own wellness a priority.

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Family Caregiving FAQs

What is self-care?
Self-care is tending to your own physical and emotional needs, even when you’re looking after others. This can involve maintaining personal relationships by making time for family and friends, prioritizing activities and hobbies you enjoy, and taking care of your own physical health by exercising, eating well, and getting enough sleep. When the stress of looking after others duties builds up, rather than bottle your feelings, share what you’re going through with a support group or trusted friend.
What is the best day care near me?
Adult day care services can be useful resources when you need respite from caregiving responsibilities,. You can often find specific programs for aging adults or those with dementia. Some services include planned recreational activities and opportunities for your loved one to socialize with other adults while under the care of dedicated staff. To find facilities near you, start by searching for resources that are specific to your loved one’s condition. For example, you can check the websites of local organizations that specialize in dementia or public services like the U.S. Administration on Aging’s Eldercare Locator. Once you find a list of nearby day care facilities, consider each service’s accreditation, hours, professional history, and policies.
Is there a caregiver support group near me?
Support groups can provide emotional support and help you feel less alone on your caregiving journey. To find caregiver support groups near you, start by looking for resources that match your loved one’s condition. If they have Alzheimer’s disease, for example, turn to local or online organizations that are dedicated to dementia. Many of these organizations include a list of local, national, or even international support groups. You can also try asking your loved one’s doctor, local hospital staff, or adult day care services for recommendations.
Does Medicare cover in-home care?
According to the U.S. government’s website, Medicare Parts A and B may cover in-home care under specific conditions. These could include receiving doctor-ordered services such as physical therapy or speech-language therapy, and your doctor certifying that your condition leaves you homebound. Medicare won’t cover at-home health services if your condition requires more extensive care than part-time or intermittent assistance from a nurse. Medicare also won’t cover you if all you need is custodial care, such as help with bathing or dressing. Medicare coverage may still an option for people who attend adult day care.
What are the benefits of helping others?
Whether you’re a family caregiver looking after a loved one or doing some form of volunteer work, helping others can enhance your well-being in many different ways. You’ll often learn new skills that can be useful in other areas of your life. You’ll also develop a sense of accomplishment as you become more skilled and knowledgeable. Helping others can be an expression of love and open you to new perspectives. As you care for an aging parent, for example, you create new memories and connect with them on a deeper level. Caregiving can also give you a sense of fulfillment as you help ease another person’s suffering or help them enjoy a richer life.