Thursday, April 10, 2008

The Caregiver

If you are at home or living close by when a loved one gets diagnosed with Alzheimer's Disease, guess what? That's it
You are living your life dealing with your own issues and then suddenly everything gets turned upside down, your plans gets put on hold and suddenly you are spending all day dealing with your loved one's problems.All you are wondering is when are you going to get your life back, when are things going to return to normal.

The good news is that they are many support groups available today, back then I did not have that as a matter of fact I did not have access to the internet.
My time as a primary caregiver was one of trial and error.

Its hard to begin to understand the exhaustion one can experience when one is having to deal with the many responsibilities of caring for a loved one with Alzheimer's Disease..
Even though a cure has not been found there are many things you the primary caregiver at home can do to improve the quality of life for your loved one
Caregiving is hard work and it affects you emotionally,mentally, socially and physically
You come to the place where you have to deal with depression, frustration anger and a myriad of other emotions.
The stress of long term caregiving leads to fatigue which leads to burnout.

If you let yourself go by overlooking your own needs, continually eating a poor diet or not finding the time to eat and is constantly deprived of sleep you will become susceptible to illness
You begin to get caught up in crisis after crisis and begin to forget about yourself .

Constantly bending and lifting and straining leads to muscular injuries,too much of stress makes you a candidate for heart problems.You are also prone to weight gain or loss, anemia blood pressure problems and other health issues.
All of these adverse problems can be solved by taking care of yourself.

Taking care of yourself can be vitally important if you want to continue to take care of your loved one, you actually become a better caregiver because you are more mentally, physically and emotionally alert.
During this time you also learn a whole lot about yourself.

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