Finding Help as a Caregiver
Discovering that a loved one has a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s or any other related dementia can be devastating. It not only brings into question your role as an adult child, sibling, or spouse, but it also brings into question the kinds of responsibilities you may now assume. Dementia can develop at varying rates and symptoms can manifest in different ways. It seems like there is a new challenge every day for the family caregiver. Fortunately, you do not have to do this all by yourself. Caregiving can often feel like an isolating experience primarily because of all the unexpected stressors that impact family caregivers on a day to day basis. However, there are businesses, government organizations, and support groups out there that can help.
Consider the following advice:
- Get the family together: If you have other family members nearby, it will behoove you to meet with all of them to get everybody on the same page. Come in with a list of questions you want answered by the end of your meeting. Go over topics that may be hanging over your head like about people’s willingness to make commitments to help, finances, or questions about the future. Try to come to a mutually agreeable consensus about how you can all cooperate with one another to help care for your loved one.
- Care Management services: Care managers help plan and coordinate care for your aging loved one (who may have an illness) to ensure their quality of life and independence to the extent possible. You can do research online to figure out what care management resources exist near you. Care managers can work for non-profit organizations, as well as any kind of counseling services that work with aging seniors and their caregivers.
- Meal Programs: Many organizations in your community can be helpful when trying to figure how to ensure your loved one is receiving proper nourishment. This form of help can be a huge financial relief. According to the Family Caregiver Association, programs may be offered at religious institutions, schools, community centers, and centers for aging citizens.
- Elder Care Organizations: Many places in your area can fall under this category. They can be agencies, registries, and non-profit organizations. For example, Alzheimer’s Care Resource Center in Lake Worth, FL is a non-profit organization providing counseling, care management, and support group services for the sole purpose of helping caregivers.
- Professional Help: Professional help can come in two forms: 1) a professional caregiver to help out with caregiving responsibilities at home; or 2) a counselor that you can speak to privately about what is troubling you. Both of these solutions have unique benefits. A professional caregiver can help lessen the load of your caregiving responsibilities and give you some much needed relief. A counselor, on the other hand, will be able to work with you to develop strategies to manage difficult situations you might be facing. Although these avenues are optional, they can offer tremendous help and provide profound mental health benefits.
If you have any questions or need any more information, please call ElderCare at 888-285-0093 or visit our website!
 Source: https://www.caregiver.org/caregiving-home-guide-community-resources