This article was updated on 3/16/2022
Caregiving is a rewarding experience, but it can also be tiring and stressful. Providing care for another can take its toll on the caregiver, especially for those who are working and/or caring for children as well. While you may have a million questions to ask respite care providers, try to narrow it down to just these three important questions below.
Many caregivers are older adults themselves and often unpaid; all this responsibility can be physically and mentally exhausting. Regardless of how dedicated, prepared, and capable you may be, exhaustion and stress is bad for your health and well-being, and for the health and well-being of those for whom you provide care. This is where a respite care provider comes in.
About Respite Care
Respite care provides temporary relief to those caring for loved ones. Respite care providers can help in a number of scenarios, such as stepping in when the primary caregiver needs to step away for a personal or business affair, travel, go on vacation, or take a break.
Respite caregivers can lend a hand with patients who have just gotten out of the hospital or rehabilitation, or have undergone same-day surgery or other outpatient procedure, and would benefit from added care. Sometimes, people who are evaluating the benefits of senior living before making a permanent move hire a respite care provider.
When choosing a respite care provider, narrow the list down to a few options according to recommendations from friends or others. Next, create a list of questions to ask respite care providers on your list.
3 Questions to Ask Respite Care Providers
1. What types of services do you provide?
Create a list of services that you provide in your daily caretaking duties. This list might include bathing and dressing, feeding, transportation, shopping, laundry, medication management, companionship, and emotional support. Next, ask the respite care provider for a list of available services to determine if they offer the services required. While it may be impossible to replace you and the infinite number of things you do for your loved one, respite care providers can perform a wide variety of duties. Read about Serenity Oak’s services and amenities.
2. What activities are available?
Engaging in activities that match an individual’s personal abilities and interests can keep your loved one comfortable and engaged. Activities might include crafts, watching TV, going for a walk outside, listening to music, chatting with their caregiver, and interacting with others.
3. What type of training do your staff members receive?
Above all else, the respite care providers you choose must be well trained and capable of handling whatever emergencies may come up while you are gone. Look for caregivers with several years experience and who have undergone special training that allows them to give quality care for patients with Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia.
How Can Respite Care Help?
Depending on the needs of your loved ones, caring for them can be an all-consuming role. You might find that you have little time to take care of those necessary tasks for yourself because of the time and effort that such a selfless decision typically requires.
Without it being obvious, it’s easy for the day-to-routine of caring for another person to overtake nearly every aspect of your former life. You might find yourself wondering and feeling things that make you feel guilty.
It’s important to remember that being a caregiver is as much as challenging as it is selfless. You devote a great deal of time and effort — both mentally and physically — to ensure that your loved one’s needs are taken care of. It’s natural to sometimes have feelings and thoughts that make you unhappy.
1. Time for friends
Time with friends and other social engagements are often the first things to be cut from your life once you start caring for a loved one. It can seem like you need to devote the time you’d normally spend with friends as a caregiver. However, making social engagements a priority can provide a much-needed break, rejuvenate your spirit, and offer you a sounding board for venting about your changed circumstances.
2. Personal time
Whether personal time for you means curling up with a good book, hitting the gym, or heading out to explore your surroundings, being a caregiver often means these opportunities are reduced. Senior respite care can provide you with the time and space to allow you to continue to flourish as someone beyond your role as a caregiver.
3. Focus on you
It’s all too easy to let your own needs slip into the background when you’re taking care of a loved one. You might find yourself putting off your own doctor’s appointments because you can’t find anyone to help out for a couple of hours. Discovering that you feel a lack of energy and focus is also common for those in the caregiving role. Respite care provides you with the opportunity to take care of yourself so you can better take care of those you love.
For more information, contact Serenity Oaks Assisted Living today. We are glad to provide quality care for your loved one while you take a short break.