Thursday, September 20, 2012

Caregiver Stress

Dealing with Caregiver Stress
                                     Susan E. Thompson, MSW, LCSW
                                     Licensed Clinical Social Worker 

Stress is a very real consequence of the ongoing responsibilities of caregivers on top of their own personal life's demands.  The term "hidden patients" refers to those folks that have taken on the tasks of caregiving for their loved ones - in various capacities. Sometimes it involves actually living with the patient - other times it is caring for the patient’s needs by periodic visits or remotely coordinating support for them.

The stress can be emotional, physical and financial. It can lead to burnout if not dealt with properly.  Caregiver stress can manifest itself in various symptoms:
               -Feeling Trapped, Anxious or Depressed
               -Feeling Exhausted and Overwhelmed
               -Feeling Helpless/Weary and easily Agitated
               -Guilt -for Feeling what you are Feeling

It is so important - and yet often difficult to get or accept help for ourselves and our loved ones. First, you must recognize there is a problem.  Second, you must be willing to do something different.  Consider trying the following:

Set realistic goals for yourself.

Set priorities - daily, weekly, etc.

Avoid being a perfectionist. (A guaranteed recipe for frustration.)

Learn to say "No" to invites, to activities that only serve to stress you further.

Allow others to help you - if you have someone to whom you can delegate a task - give them something specific to do for example, sit with loved one for a few hours one day while you take a break.

Utilize community services where available for: day respite programs, meal delivery or medical appointment transportation for your loved one.

Consider hiring an individual or service to help with those tasks that would help YOU the most. Have them help with:

   Sitting with Patient - companion services
   Transportation to medical appointments
   Paying bills
   Light housekeeping/laundry assistance

-Plan something fun/enjoyable for yourself at least weekly so that you have something to look forward to. Go out to a movie or have dinner with a friend.

-Stay in touch with someone you can talk to - friend, therapist or neighbor.

Remember.... Taking care of you is not selfish it enables you to continue to be available to help care for those you love.

                                                                                   Printed with permission


Sunday, August 26, 2012

Emergency Planning for Pets

§  Know where to go with your pets if you must leave your home unexpectedly.  Keep a list of pet friendly hotels, if you are unable to stay in your home.
§  Know that your pet is up to date on vaccines. Make sure your pet is protected against diseases that he might be exposed to in a shelter or boarding facility.
§  Know  your pet’s favorite items.  Bring a favorite toy or bed with familiar scents these can reduce anxiety.  Bring drinking water and food for at least a 4 day stay for Kitty or Fido.
§  Know that your pet has been micro-chipped and/or wears an identification collar. This is a simple way for people to contact you if your pet has been found. Most shelters have scanning wands that can read a microchip that contain your pet’s identification.
A Final Tip, take a picture of yourself or family member with your pet and email it to yourself. This photo can help to document ownership if you are separated from your pet (as if a furry of face licking and tail wagging isn’t enough).

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Cleaning Closets Can Seem Like an Olympic-Sized Task

Keeping your closet clean can seem like an Olympic sized task, so let DayTimeSavers, Personal Assistant Services, help.  We can partner with you to organize and clean your cluttered closet helping you to bring order to your life.

Clothing constantly casts off tiny fibers that mixes with dander and make closets a major source of household dust. Each time the closet door is opened, an invisible cloud of dust is formed. You can’t stop clothes from shedding fibers; but keeping closets clean will greatly cut down on dust.

Enclose items on shelves
Plastic containers are best — they keep dust out and let you see what’s inside additionally they’re easy to take off shelves and clean.

Bag the clothes you rarely wear
Slip garment bags or large garbage bags over clothes you rarely wear or that are out of season. They help to cut down on fibers and keep the clothes themselves from becoming depositories for dust.

Keep floors clear
If the floor is cluttered, you may just bypass it while vacuuming. But a wide-open floor makes cleaning the floor easier and allows you to vacuum the entire closet instead of just the center aisle.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Dog Days of Summer

Dog Days occur during the months of July and August, which typically have the warmest summer temperatures.  The old world belief comes from fact that Sirius, the Dog Star, is in close proximity to the sun and was responsible for the hot weather.
During the dog days of summer, make sure your dog stay hydrated.  Freeze low sodium chicken broth in an ice cube tray for a cool treat.  Because broth does not freeze as solidly as plain water, it is easier on your best friend’s teeth.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

DayTimeSavers--Your personal Assistant service provider

DayTimeSavers,LLC is a full-service Virginia Beach personal assistant services firm serving busy individuals seeking to free up their time.    Bonded.    Insured.
Visit our website