Assuming the role of CDPAP Personal Assistant is a serious responsibility – one that could be overwhelming at first.
Here are five tips for CDPAP caregivers to minimize stress, reduce anxiety, and stay energized while caring for a loved one.
1. Care for yourself first. Remember the powerful message from the airlines: Putting on the oxygen mask and caring for yourself first allows you to look after someone else. Maintaining your regular doctor and dental visits, and caring for yourself first, is as important for you as it is for the family member or friend under your care.
2. Encourage independence. Learn as soon as possible what the person under your care is capable of doing independently, and provide him or her with opportunities to do so. Fostering independence creates a cooperative partnership, allowing you to make efficient use of your energy, and the elderly person to maintain maximum self-sufficiency.
3. Network! Joining a caregivers’ support group can give you access to valuable insights and ideas from other group members to help you cope with any challenges you might experience. Make sure to keep the communication flowing with other family members too!
4. Keep a journal. Sometimes it’s hard to notice subtle changes in your loved ones’ condition, especially when you see them on a constant basis. A journal will help you keep track of any ongoing challenges or issues. It can help you remember “the way things were” before your loved one started a new medication or had any changes in the daily routine. A journal can be a real asset during doctors’ visits.
5. Schedule your own down-time. Take advantage of CDPAP vacation benefits. Scheduling your own down-time daily, during the week or on weekends, can be a key factor to help you avoid exhaustion and burn-out.
Remember: Earning a steady income from CDPAP by looking after a family member or friend, can be a source of fulfillment and satisfaction!