Caregivers often accept their role with the understanding that providing care to a loved one will impact many areas of their lives. While it is true that a caregiver can expect to experience some fatigue and emotional fluctuations, there are times when symptoms may arise that indicate a need to take action. Home Care Assistance of New Hampshire presents the top 4 symptoms that caregivers should never ignore along with how to regain their health and well-being.
- Muscle and Joint Pain – Many caregivers find that they must do some lifting as they help their loved ones with their daily routine. While it is important to always practice safe lifting procedures, it is possible that heavy or repetitive lifting can take its toll. Those who experience new or unusual pain in their muscles or joints should have it checked out by their physician.
- Overwhelming Emotions – Caregivers are exposed to stressful situations on a daily basis, and it is common for a person to experience fluctuations in their emotions. However, feelings of lingering sadness, increased frustration and resentment can all signal a need for a break. Joining a support group, talking with a counselor and taking a few hours away can all help a person to avoid caregiver burnout and depression.
- Increased Weight Gain or Loss – Sudden changes in a caregiver’s weight can be a sign that their body is responding negatively to the increased stress. Weight loss is common in caregivers who may skip meals so that they can tend to their loved one’s needs. Alternatively, weight gain can occur when a person “stress eats” or skips their workouts. Although serious weight changes should be discussed with a doctor, often all a caregiver needs is to recognize how their responsibilities are affecting their health so that they can modify their schedule.
- Chest Pain and Palpitations – It is rarely talked about, however, caregivers are at an increased risk for cardiovascular disease due to the impact of stress upon their body. For this reason, any type of chest pain or heart palpitations should be assessed by a physician. Whether it is due to a panic attack or indicates a developing heart problem, taking action early will enable a caregiver to continue to provide quality care to their loved one while protecting their well-being.
If you are a caregiver and are in need of respite, contact Home Care Assistance of New Hampshire today. We are a leading provider of hourly and live-in home care in New Hampshire and are committed to providing family caregivers with the break they need, while ensuring the safety and comfort of their aging loved ones. Call 603-471-3004 to learn more about our in-home care services and to further discuss care needs.