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Tips to Cope with Caregiver Stress


A caregiver is a family member or a friend who helps a person with activities of daily living — personal care, meal prep, medication management, and companionship, among many other things.

Caregiving involves time, energy, and resources. Often, caregivers cope with stressful situations and overwhelming feelings, which can take a toll on their own lives. It is important for caregivers to remember to be mindful of their own needs as they care for others.

There are several simple ways that caregivers can reduce stress:

  • Set boundaries - give yourself permission to take time for yourself and schedule uninterrupted time for self-care.
  • Take a break - walk away or count to ten, remove yourself from the situation, even if it's for a minute.
  • Take a breath - just a few deep breaths or a breathing exercise can calm you down and help you refocus.
  • Find your zone - take a moment to fully immerse yourself in a preferred new activity to give your mind a break.
  • Exercise - get moving, practice yoga or stretching, go for a walk or a run to relax your body.
  • Go outside - connecting with nature, even for a few minutes can rejuvenate your mind.
  • Ask for help - you don't have to do it alone, find someone to take some of your responsibilities or give you a break.
  • Get support - talking about it helps, share how you feel with your friends and family, join a support group or speak with your clergy leader.
  • Get professional help - if you are feeling overwhelmed or want to share your feelings, privately speaking with a behavioral health counselor can help.
  • Acknowledge your good work - value what you are doing for your loved one, it is important work.

Understand that stress is a natural part of life, especially when you are caring for a loved one, but taking time to take care of yourself may help you be a better caregiver.

If you would like information about speaking with a counselor visit Redeemer Health's Behavioral Health Services page at redeemerhealth.org/behavioralhealth, or call 215-914-4190.