What is Caregiver Burnout?
Burnout (n.)- exhaustion of physical or emotional strength or motivation usually as a result of prolonged stress or frustration. No matter the profession or how skilled they may be, just about anyone can suffer from burnout. Because the job of a caregiver is no easy task, caregiver burnout is more common than you may think. To have the sole responsibility for the well-being of an aging, often fragile and ill, person is a lot to take on. And let’s not forget about the constant supervision and critiques of concerned family members.
What Are Signs of Caregiver Burnout?
If you’re feeling stressed and frustrated, there are a few questions you have to ask yourself.
- Are you physically and/or emotionally exhausted that your mood and habits have changed for the worst?
- Have you been sleeping and eating more or less than usual?
- Do you find yourself with little to no energy and/or suffering from headaches and colds more often?
- Have you noticed that you’ve been anxious, irritable, and/or have experienced bouts of helplessness or hopelessness?
- Have you experienced a loss of interest? Whether it is your job or hobbies, you just don’t get a kick out of it like you used to.
If the majority of your answers were yes to these top 5 signs of caregiver burnout, it’s time to step back and seek out some caregiver burnout help.
Caregiver Burnout Help
There are a variety of ways to cure caregiver burnout, and because everyone is different it’s just a matter of finding out what works best for you. Start off small and try out some me-time. Do something that’ll help you relax and unwind. Me-time is most effective when it’s integrated into your daily or weekly routine. Anything from a 5-minute meditation session to an hour long workout can make all the difference.
But don’t stop there. Establish and follow through with some health goals. Work on getting good quality sleep, plan out healthier meals, and work in an activity that’ll get your heart pumping for a half an hour at least.
Be proactive as you seek caregiver burnout help by joining caregiver support groups. There’s nothing more comforting to know that there’s a whole community out that can relate and are ready and willing to help. Learn how other caregivers conquered their burnout, and share your story. Your journey to caregiver burnout help may just save someone else.
If your caregiver burnout is so severe that your home and work life are suffering, seek caregiver burnout help immediately by making an appointment with your doctor and a counselor. And if you’re the caregiver for a loved one, consider respite care, a short-term care service that’ll allow you to take the break you need and deserve!