4 things caregivers should do for their own health


March 7, 2011

Caregivers often become so focused on helping an older adult that they forget to take care of themselves. This can lead to health consequences that can impact one's lifestyle and the responsibilities toward a senior. That's why it's important that caregivers make sure they are in good health. Caring.com recently made a checklist of things that individuals shouldn't forget:

1. Physicals. It may seem like too much work to make a doctor's appointment, but getting an annual physical is a key to maintaining one's health. Check-ups can be important preventative measures.

2. Don't forget teeth, skin or vision. Caregivers may also start to become remiss on personal hygiene and other health issues due to stress. Just remember that neglecting the problems until they become an emergency can be more stressful in the long run.

3. Reduce stress. While not on the Caring.com list, reducing stress is fundamental to healthy caregiving. Many conditions can be attributed to stress. To better relax, one may want to consider installing an elderly alert system. This device enables older users to send a medical alert in the case of an emergency, so caregivers can leave them alone for periods of time without worrying.

4. Stay on top of sicknesses. It may be easy to ignore the signs of a health condition, but one should report any new symptoms of an illness to a doctor right away.