During this unprecedented time, family caregivers are working overtime to take care of loved ones. It is easy to get into survival mode and forget all about self-care.  

The following is a list of things to remember:

  1. Help yourself before you help others. Just like on an airplane, put on your own oxygen mask first! 
  2. Identify your fear barriers to self-care. For example, do you have trouble asking for help yourself? 
  3. Communicate constructively. Use I statements, be clear and specific, and be a good listener to others.
  4. ASK FOR HELP! Accept help. A neighbor could give you a break by sitting with the person you care for as they enjoy the afternoon sun. A relative could help fill out insurance forms. 
  5. Attend to your own healthcare needs. Talk to a physician about your own health. Build a partnership with him or her.
  6. Start to exercise. Even chores like sweeping or walking the dog can use muscle power.
  7. Identify and acknowledge your feelings. Seek emotional support from a counselor, pastor, or friend.
  8. Finally, remember to take respite time. Call a care giving agency such as Home Instead and ask about respite care.

Caregiver self-care is so important and will help the person you are caring for too. 

Wendy Allison Beyer

Home Instead Senior Care

West Portland/Lake Oswego

503-894-8796 office