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How to Care for Yourself When Caring for a Sick Loved One

Caring for a loved one can be difficult for both the caretaker and their family member. When you are a caregiver, it is crucial that you take care of yourself. Under normal circumstances, sleep and downtime are necessary for the body and brain to recover from life’s daily stresses. When you add the stress of caring for a loved one, these elements become even more important. Taking time to care for yourself and meet your needs ensures you will be more capable of, and effective when, helping your loved one.

Below are tips and tricks to keep you physically, emotionally, and mentally healthy.

  • Take Time for Yourself: Even if it is just for a short period of time each day, schedule time for activities you enjoy. This “you time” can be extremely beneficial.
  • Create a L.I.S.T. (Likes, Interests, Special Things): What makes you happy? Reading a book? Yoga? Taking a bubble bath? Meditating, journaling, etc.? Once you have identified the things on your “L.I.S.T.,” schedule time on your calendar to do one activity each day. This will increase the likelihood that you will actually take time for one or more of these activities.
  • Exercise: Setting aside just 20 minutes for a stroll outside will enhance your mental and physical state. Get some fresh air, vitamin D, and experience a change of scenery to rejuvenate your mind and body.
  • Ask for Help: Accept support from family and friends when needed. When help is offered, do not feel guilty accepting. Having a to-do list of simple tasks on hand can be effective in easily assigning a job to an individual when the offer to help is presented.
  • Acknowledge Your Feelings: Family and friends are a great support system when you need to vent. Venting is healthy, allowing you to express your emotions, rather than holding them in and feeling that you are suffering alone. If you feel uncomfortable sharing your thoughts and feelings with family and friends, there are other support options. For example, you can join an online or in-person support group that provides a space in which the members are experiencing similar situations. If you prefer one-on-one conversations, seek out a therapist, counselor, or social worker to discuss your feelings and receive professional advice/help.

How Preferred Home Health Care & Nursing Services Can Help You:

  • Preferred Home Health Care & Nursing Services is widely recognized as a best-in-class provider of in-home skilled nursing services for acute medical conditions. We have the best, most caring staff available to client families. Our nursing staff will take care of your loved one and provide you with the opportunity to take care of your life and your daily needs, so you can nurture your own health and well-being. One of our clients from South Philadelphia, Meredith S., recently relayed how she and her husband used a night nurse to catch up on sleep, and that helped their outlook immensely.
  • Preferred can also supply information and resources that make you feel more in control. Our clients’ opinions are what we value most. Here’s what some of them have to say:

“The nurses with Preferred really put our minds at ease.”

“I recommend (Preferred) to any parent needing skilled nursing care for their child.”

The bottom line is that when someone you love is sick, taking care of yourself is critically important. There are a lot of ways to take care of yourself. Don’t put it off another day, and if you need a partner, Preferred Home Health Care & Nursing Services is here to help you.

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