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Being Honest With Yourself about How Caregiver Stress Affects You

Caregivers in Jensen Beach FL

Caregivers in Jensen Beach FLBeing a family caregiver for elderly parents can be an extremely rewarding experience, but it can also be one that is very hard on your mind and your body. Research indicates that adults who have taken on the responsibilities of caring for their aging parents are more than 60 percent more likely to experience stress and the potentially dangerous mental, emotional, cognitive, and physical health consequences associated with this stress, including a higher risk of mortality.

Many caregivers, however, do not even realize that they are dealing with stress because they do not associate the symptoms that they are experiencing with stress. This can make it difficult to properly address the issues and protect their ongoing health and wellbeing. If you are this type of caregiver and have been minimizing the impact that stress has on your life by not admitting it to yourself or by denying it to others, it is time that you are honest with yourself about this issue and take the necessary steps to reduce your stress so you can reduce its impact on your life.

Just as the amount of stress that a person experiences after starting a care journey is personal to him and not necessarily the same as the amount of tress that others will experience, the ways that this stress will manifest will also vary. This is why it is so important to be aware of the potential effects of stress so that you can recognize them in yourself and do what you need to do to resolve it.

Some of the common ways that stress can impact people include:
• Frequent headaches
• Backaches
• Difficulty sleeping
• Increased forgetfulness
• Tight muscle
• Anger
• Clenched jaw
• Irritability
• Feeling “at the end of your rope” or being easily aggravated
• Stomachache and/or digestive problems
• Trouble sleeping
• Depression
• Low energy level
• Feeling like everything around you is out of your control
• Anxious, nervous feeling
• Sense of helplessness
• Lack of patience

It is important to remember that symptoms can also be associated with other conditions including illnesses and mental health concerns that require attention and treatment. If you start to notice that you are experiencing several symptoms regularly or that your symptoms are impacting your quality of life and ability to fulfill your responsibilities on any given day, get in touch with your doctor so that you can discuss the symptoms and ensure that you know the actual cause.

Once you have identified the ways that stress impacts you, it is important to develop healthy, effective coping strategies so that you can not only reduce the impact that the stress has on you, but also reduce your overall level of stress.

Some effective coping techniques include:
• Taking a walk daily
• Reading devotionals or affirmations each morning
• Prayer or meditation
• Participating in a caregiver support group
• Interacting with animals
• Spending time with your partner
• Making and keeping regular dates to spend time with friends or family outside of your care relationship
• Having a daily ritual such as reading a book or watching a favorite movie.

If you or an aging loved one are considering hiring a professional caregiver in Jensen Beach, FL, please contact the caring staff at Atlantic In-Home Care today. Call (772) 202-3006 for information.

Source:
http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/HealthyLiving/StressManagement/HowDoesStressAffectYou/How-Does-Stress-Affect-You_UCM_307985_Article.jsp#.Vrywq1grLIU
http://www.cnn.com/2007/HEALTH/conditions/08/13/caregiver.syndrome/index.html?eref=rss_health

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