How to Manage Stress When Caring for a Parent With Alzheimer’s Disease

When caring for a parent diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, family members are often hesitant to consider moving mom or dad into a memory care community. While this is commendable, the stress that can come with taking on the caregiver role may be harmful to both the adult child and the one receiving the care. Underlying symptoms of caregiver stress can include impatience, uncontrolled anger, feelings of exhaustion and other physical, mental and emotional health problems. Taking some basic measures can help control the stress.

Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle

Providing care for a family member who suffers from Alzheimer’s disease is often a full-time job. Maintaining good health in this situation can be difficult, but it’s essential. Keys to doing so include maintaining a proper diet, exercising regularly and getting proper rest. Failing to maintain your health will not only impact you but can also make you a less effective caregiver.

Take Caregiving Breaks

Everyone needs to take a break from the daily routine of life. There are few people who need this more than those who provide regular care for a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease. Sometimes the inclination is to never take a break due to a feeling that no one else can provide the same level of care. Taking a break is not as hard as it may seem. While some may ask another family member to take over the caregiving duties for a short time, another option is to find a facility that provides respite care services for those with various forms of dementia. This can be a good choice, providing the caregiver needed rest and ensuring the loved one will receive quality care in a safe environment.

Taking these steps can help someone who provides care for a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease, ensuring they will be able to care for his or her parent over the long term.

 

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