Tips for Handling the Holidays as a Caregiver
The holidays are often a time for family, but they are also a time that caregivers may find particularly stressful. If you are a caregiver, here are a few tips for handling the holidays:
Be Flexible with Planning
Between the COVID pandemic and flu season, plans may need to be changed at the last minute or even canceled. Make family members aware of your loved one's situation early, especially if they are struggling to overcome multiple conditions. Make your family aware of your concerns early to avoid hurt feelings and consider planning alternative ways of celebrating such as via a phone or video call. While being on video is not quite the same as having everyone together for the holidays, it might go a long way towards ensuring that your charge remains safe from whatever virus happens to be more predominant in your area.
Secure Respite Care if Needed
The holidays can often be a busy and stressful season, but that doesn't mean that you should stop all self-care efforts. Whether you need to attend a personal appointment or simply need some downtime, make sure that you have someone who can help you with respite care. This can be a family member who steps in, or a trained professional, depending on your individual situation.
If you are hosting loved ones this holiday season in addition to acting as care giver, make sure that you allow your family to pitch in whether via bringing food and beverages, organizing events, or even caring for your charge for an afternoon. On the other hand, having a professional care giver step in can give you time to complete tasks from your holiday to-do list without stressing about leaving your charge alone.
Check in With the Doctor
If your loved one requires careful observation by a medical professional, make sure that you notify them about any travel plans and try to schedule any follow-ups ahead of time to help make sure that your loved one stays on schedule. Likewise, take a moment to review medications to ensure that your charge will not be running out during the holiday season. If a medication is running low, refill as soon as possible to avoid missing a dose. It is also a good idea to ask your doctor about whether your loved one can travel safely.
The holiday season is inherently stressful because there are so many extra tasks to complete and events to attend. However, the true spirit of the season is about unity, compassion, and gratitude. While gifts are nice, the gift of being present with your family, either live or over a video call, along with your senior loved one, is one of the best things that you can do to mark the festive occasion.
If you are looking for respite care in New York City during the holiday season, or any other time of year, contact us today.