Tips for Family Caregivers
1. Caregiving is a job and respite is your earned right. Reward yourself with breaks often.
2. Watch out for signs of depression and don't delay in getting professional help when you need it.
3. When people offer help, accept the offer and suggest specific things that they can do.
4. Educate yourself about your loved ones condition and how to communicate effectively with doctors.
5. There's a difference between caring and doing. Be open to technologies and ideas that promote your loved one's independence.
6. Trust your instincts. Most of the time they'll lead you in the right direction.
7. Caregivers often do a lot of lifting, pushing, and pulling. Be good to your back.
8. Grieve for your losses, and then allow yourself to dream new dreams.
9. Seek support from other caregivers. There is great strength in knowing you are not alone.
10. Stand up for your rights as a caregiver.
Caregivers Bill of Rights
I have the right to take care of myself.
This is not an act of selfishness.
It will give me the ability to take
better care of my loved one.
I have the right to seek help from
others even though my loved one
may object. I know the limits
of my own endurance and strengths.
I have the right to maintain parts of
my own life that do not include
the person I care for, just as I would if
he were healthy. I know that I do
everything that I reasonably can do for
this person. I have the right to do some
things just for myself.
I have the right to get consideration, affection,
forgiveness, and acceptance for what I
do for my loved one, as I offer these in return.
I have the right to take pride in what I'm
doing. And I have the right to applaud the
courage it has taken to meet the needs
of my loved one.
I have the right to protect my individuality.
I also have the right to a life that will
sustain me in times when my loved
one no longer needs my full-time help.