There are a lot of things that can cause a caregiver stress. As a caregiver, the demands on your time are sometimes more than you can handle. Caregivers also face physical demands that are hard on them, like having to lift and transfer a senior who has a disability. In addition, it can be really hard to watch an older adult that you care about decline in health. All these challenges can cause what experts refer to as “caregiver stress” or “caregiver burnout.” If you have any of these 5 signs of caregiver stress, see a doctor to discuss ways to treat and manage the stress.

#1: You Are So Darn Tired!
Caregiver stress can cause fatigue, which is extreme tiredness. You may not feel better after resting. The fatigue can leave you with little energy to get anything done beyond what you absolutely have to do. As a result, you may not be engaging in activities you used to enjoy, like a hobby or spending time with family and friends.

#2: You’re Ignoring Your Own Needs
When was the last time you went to the doctor or dentist? Are you eating well and finding time to exercise? You might tell yourself you don’t have time to go to your regular medical appointments. Or, you may just be apathetic about your own health. If you’re not taking care of yourself, it can be a sign of caregiver stress.

#3: Your Alcohol Consumption Has Increased
Has that glass of wine after dinner turned into two, three, more? Even if you’re not drinking to get drunk, if you’re using alcohol to relax frequently, it may be because of caregiver stress. Some caregivers turn to improper use of sleeping pills or other medications to relieve their negative feelings.

#4: You Get Angry at the Older Adult
Caregiver stress can cause you to feel irritable and angry, so you snap at your aging relative when you don’t mean to. That can lead to an argument that just increases your stress level. It can also leave you feeling bad about yourself and questioning your caregiver skills.

#5: You Catch Every Cold That Goes By
How often have you been sick in the last year? If your answer is “a lot,” it could be because of caregiver stress. Caregiver stress impacts your immune system, making it less effective. As a result, you may catch every virus you come in contact with, resulting in more colds or other illness than you would normally get.

Sources
https://www.helpguide.org/articles/stress/caregiver-stress-and-burnout.htm
https://www.womenshealth.gov/a-z-topics/caregiver-stress
https://www.alz.org/help-support/caregiving/caregiver-health/caregiver-stress

If you are considering caregivers in The Heights, TX, for an aging loved one, please call the caring staff at At Your Side Home Care. We will answer all of your senior care questions. Call today: (832) 271-1600.