Being a caregiver is time consuming. As a result, many caregivers find themselves with no time to do the activities they once enjoyed. They may not even feel like they have time to spend with family and friends. Or, when they do have time, they may be too exhausted to socially engage. This can leave them feeling lonely and isolated. Being isolated can lead to health problems, like depression, weight gain caused by emotional eating, and high blood pressure because of stress. Because of its negative impact on health and quality of life, it’s important that caregivers find ways to avoid caregiver isolation. Here are 5 ways to do that.
1. Join a Support Group.
Being part of a caregiver support group can help you feel less alone. By hearing the stories of others, you’ll know that you are not the only person in your situation. It will also give you a safe place to vent your feelings. You may even meet some new friends.
2. Make Time for Others.
Do not let being a caregiver take over your life. Schedule time to spend with other people and stick to that schedule. If you’ve set up a coffee date with a friend, don’t let a demanding care recipient insist you miss or change it for a task that can wait until later. Also, know that even short interactions with others can be enough to relieve feelings of loneliness. It’s nice to spend hours with a friend, but even a 15-minute phone conversation may be enough to keep you feeling connected.
3. Use Social Media to Connect.
Social media can help caregivers to stay connected with others on their own time. It takes only a few minutes to check your Facebook feed to see encouraging messages from friends and find out what they are up to. You can also share what’s going on in your life and ask for help when you need it.
4. Take an Exercise Class.
Everyone needs to exercise to stay healthy. You can make your workout time an opportunity to connect with other people by taking a group exercise class. You’ll have a few minutes before and after class to talk to your classmates. You could make some new friends or invite a current friend to join you.
5. Hire Home Care.
If you truly feel like you don’t have enough time to squeeze in social activities, consider hiring home care to stay with your aging relative while you’re away. Home care providers can be scheduled for any time during the week and can even stay overnight. When you hire home care, you’ll know that your loved one is safe and being taken care of, so you can relax and enjoy your time away.
If you have a loved one who could benefit from caregiver services in Danville, CA, contact the caregivers at A Better Living Home Care Agency. We help seniors and their families with many levels of home care. Call 925-566-2366 for more information.