Six out of ten family caregivers are women, and the average age of these caregivers is 50.1. Many female family caregivers are part of the sandwich generation. They still have children living at home, and they're still working part-time or full-time.
You have personal experience with this. You care for your dad, but you're also working full-time and have high schoolers at home. Managing it all is difficult, but you power through your days doing the best you can. As you do this, have you lost sight of your own care needs? It's not surprising if you have.
Most Common Care Tasks
Three care needs are the most commonly addressed each day. At the top of the list is help getting in and out of bed or sitting or standing up from a sofa or chair. Mobility declines and makes it hard for your dad to stand up without support.
The second most common care task involves getting dressed. Even if your dad can put on his pants and shirt, he may struggle with arthritis in the fingers, so he is unable to zip a zipper or button his shirt. He might not be able to put on his shoes or tie them.
Finally, bathing is the third most common care need. Your dad can't shower on his own. He might have difficulty with balance, making it hard for him to step over the side of the tub. Or, he has a hard time washing his hair or body due to changing cognitive function or chronic pain.
Once he's washed, he needs help drying off, drying his hair, and applying moisturizer to keep his skin from drying out. These are all tasks you help him complete each day.
There are many others, too. Many family caregivers have to offer medication reminders, clean the home, and cook meals. You may be the one driving your dad around town when he needs to run errands or get to an appointment on time.
That's what he needs. What do you need?
Never Overlook Self-Care
Self-care is just as important. You need to have time to visit friends, as socialization is important to your cognitive health, emotional health, and physical health. You need to eat healthily, and the fast food you pick up in a rush on your way home from your dad's may be convenient, but it's not always a healthy option.
You have to have time to spend doing your favorite hobbies. If you love to paint but haven't had time in months, it's time to make time.
Learn About Respite from Senior Home Care
It's time to research respite care services. Instead of being the only person helping your dad each week, hire senior home care aides to help him while you're at work, with your kids, or taking time off. You can use respite care to take a vacation or have a lazy day at home.
Use senior home care to take care of your dad while you take much-needed breaks. As much as you want to help him every day, all week, you have to have time to take care of yourself. Senior home care aides ensure you have that time for self-care.
If you or an aging loved one are considering non-medical in-home care in Scarsdale and Yonkers, NY, call Griswold Home Care
and speak to one of our caring staff members today. Call (914) 768-9065