Caregiving is one of the hardest jobs a person can do. Caregivers have higher stress, poorer health and more financial burdens than those who aren’t caregivers. Feeling burnout periodically is very normal.
The good news is many resources exist to help. Since November is Family Caregivers Month, it’s a particularly good time to check in with yourself or any caregivers in your life—you’re almost guaranteed to know a few.
Resources for caregivers
Are you burned out?
Not sure? Here’s a useful quiz from Caring.com to self-evaluate.
Cleveland Clinic also offers tips for recognizing burnout in yourself and others. It provides ideas for prevention, understanding burnout, resources for seeking help and more.
Make the job easier
Caregivers need to be well versed in advocating for themselves and their own wellness. Here are some effective ways to do that, according to research:
- Communicate with your loved one honestly and openly.
- Stay healthy.
- Seek outside support.
- Incorporate regular care for yourself.
- Find reasons to hope.
Read more about how to implement these ideas including the research behind them here: “Five tips for caregiving advocacy.”
Check out this TED talk on managing compassion fatigue while caregiving.
Theses useful tips for staying well while caregiving from Community magazine can also help prevent burnout.
Find even more resources in our Caregiver’s Toolkit.
Resources for a caregiver’s loved ones
Celebrate your caregiver
Celebrate Family Caregivers Month by giving your caregiver or one you know a gift. AARP compiled an extensive list of ideas. Most of them are geared toward self-care—something essential to avoiding burnout.
Show care where possible
We have also gathered some strategies for caring for your caregiver that can help them avoid burnout.
Watch for signs and act
Be knowledgeable about what burnout looks like and step in when necessary. Suggest they seek outside care services, at least temporarily.
And if you don’t know how to broach the topic, trying passing this article along to any caregiver you think could use it.
If you or a loved one is feeling burned out from caregiver stress, seek help. And remember, caregiving also enriches your life in many ways, including reduced mortality risk