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  • Julie Katz

Caregiver burnout

How to know when it is time to ask for help


Caregiver burnout is a huge problem. If you live with the person needing care, or visit daily for hours, you are especially at risk. Your life is on hold while your spouse or parent's well-being becomes your whole life. If you continue to care for someone daily you run the risk of ruining your physical and mental health. If that happens, you will be helping no one and creating more problems.




How can you tell if you are burning out?


  • You develop physical problems like headaches, aches and pains and frequent colds.

  • You are constantly tired despite getting sleep.

  • You are depressed or cry often.

  • You feel taken advantage of and used by others without appreciation.

  • Others (spouse, children, employers) complain that you are neglecting them.

  • You become resentful of the person you are caring for.

  • You become verbally or physically abusive to the person you are caring for.

If you find you are exhibiting any of these physical or emotional symptoms, you need to do something about it. Not only for yourself, but for the person you are caring for. Find help either paid or family. Even someone like The Extra Daughter can come a few hours a week and make a big difference. Getting away for two afternoons a week can refresh you enough to return home in a better state of mind. You can also join a support group. The Alzheimer's Association has a support for those caring for those with dementia. Here is a link for Northeast Ohio: https://www.alz.org/cleveland/helping_you/programs_services/caregiver-support-groups


If you have gotten to the point of wanting to hurt the person you are caring for or hurting yourself, please, please make immediate arrangements for long-term care. You should not feel guilty about placing someone in long-term care who needs it.


Do not suffer alone. There is a vast network of companies and organizations there to help but you need to take the first step.


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