Over time, many family caregivers find themselves becoming run down and ill from the stress and demands of caregiving. According to the Family Caregiver Alliance, caregivers often find themselves suffering because they’ve failed to take care of themselves while working hard to keep their older family member as healthy as possible. If you’ve noticed that you’re getting ill more often or just not feeling like yourself, there are some steps you can take to improve your health, like the ones described below.
Eat a Balanced Diet
Caregivers sometimes find themselves eating a lot of unhealthy processed food because it’s quick and convenient. Unfortunately, those foods are often lacking in nutrients and contain more salt, sugar, and fat than anyone should consume. You’ve probably heard the old saying “you are what you eat.” Well, when you eat unhealthy food, you’re going to be unhealthy, too. Make an effort to eat foods prepared at home from fresh, whole ingredients. Instead of grabbing a cheeseburger at lunchtime, enjoy a turkey sandwich on wholegrain bread topped with plenty of vegetables. It might take you a little time to prepare your lunch, but the time is well spent when it helps you to feel better.
Stress can lead to all kinds of physical and mental health problems, so keeping it under control is paramount to preventing illness. If you find yourself feeling particularly stressed, it may be wise to talk to your doctor. The doctor may suggest medication or counseling. In addition, you can use stress management techniques like meditation, deep breathing exercises, or yoga.
Attend Medical Appointments
Lots of caregivers stop going to their regular checkups because they are too busy to make the time. That can mean that conditions are left undiagnosed until they progress to a dangerous state. Skipping dental checkups and eye exams can also lead to problems that make life less pleasant, like toothaches and headaches from glasses that need updating.
Maintain Social Connections
A lack of time and the stress of being a caregiver can lead to losing contact with friends and family members. Caregivers often feel isolated because they spend all their time with the person they are caring for. That’s particularly unhealthy for caregivers because the work they do is difficult, and they need all the support they can get. Even if you only have a few minutes each day to call a friend, make it a point to do so. You’ll feel less alone and having a laugh with a friend can improve your mood.
If you or an aging loved-one is considering a Caregiver in Dallas, TX please contact the caring staff at Sunlife Home Care today at (877) 888-1311.
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