While caring for an elderly loved one comes with many challenges and the potential for a great deal of stress, it can also be one of the most rewarding experiences of your life. As a caregiver, you perform one of the most challenging and important jobs, but the help you provide doesn’t have to be completely one-sided. Here are some of the best and most surprising rewards of being a family caregiver.
1. Lasting Memories
Providing home care for a senior loved one gives you the chance to make new memories you’ll cherish for the rest of your life. You have the opportunity to enjoy unique experiences with your parent every day, and those special moments can help you stay strong when you face any obstacles that may arise. You can create happy memories with your loved one by doing things together you know your parent enjoys, such as baking tasty treats, tending a garden full of fragrant herbs and tasty vegetables, or creating arts and crafts projects. Many caregivers look back on the last years of their loved ones’ lives and realize they developed closer relationships and learned more about their loved ones than ever before.
Even though you cherish the time you spend with your loved one, it’s still important for you to socialize with friends and other family members, and hiring a home caregiver can allow you to do that. If you’re the primary caregiver for a senior family member and are looking for professional at-home care, Colorado Springs Home Care Assistance should be your top choice. Our dedicated and compassionate caregivers are committed to helping older adults manage their health and enjoy a higher quality of life in the golden years.
2. Increased Confidence
Learning to take care of yourself is a part of growing up, but learning to care for someone else can help you gain confidence in your own abilities and instill a sense of personal satisfaction. Overcoming the daily challenges of being a caregiver can bolster your own sense of wellbeing as well. Each day you spend providing care presents unique obstacles, but helping your loved one handle them can give you a feeling of accomplishment and enhance your self-esteem.
A professional caregiver can be a fantastic source of caregiving advice and support as you care for your older loved one. Though you may be researching multiple agencies that provide home care service, Home Care Assistance has much to offer your family and your elderly loved one. We are leaders in the senior home care industry, offering proprietary programs like our holistic Balanced Care Method and around-the-clock assistance from reliable, experienced caregivers. Trust Home Care Assistance to help your loved one enjoy a happier and healthier life in the golden years.
3. Enhanced Memory
One study found being a caregiver can actually boost cognitive function as you age. This study found caregivers performed better on memory tests than non-caregivers over the course of two years. Individuals in both groups were in their 80s, but the caregivers scored at the same level as people a decade younger.
4. Reduced Risk of Depression
The stress that often accompanies caregiving can sometimes lead to depression. However, research conducted by the American Psychological Association reveals some caregivers actually experience lower levels of depression. This is most likely to be the case for caregivers who:
• Develop healthy strategies for handling stress
• Take regular breaks from caregiving to recharge and refresh, both mentally and physically
• Practice healthy habits such as eating nutritious foods and getting plenty of sleep
5. Increased Strength
Being a caregiver often involves a great deal of physical activity. It keeps you on your feet and moving, which can support physical health. A study of 900 women found active caregivers maintained greater physical fitness than their non-caregiving counterparts. Women who were high-intensity caregivers (i.e., those who performed many functions for their loved ones) scored better on grip strength, walking speed, and other measures of strength than non-caregivers.
There are many reasons to love being a family caregiver, but it’s also important to take the time to practice self-care. Family caregivers need to care for their own wellbeing. If you’re caring for an aging loved one and are feeling overwhelmed, consider hiring a professional caregiver to provide respite care. Colorado Springs families who want to prevent burnout can turn to Home Care Assistance. One of our professional caregivers can assist your loved one at home while you take a nap, go to work, run errands, or go on vacation. To learn about our high-quality in-home care services, give us a call at (719) 822-1229 today.