Caring for a loved one going through chronic illness is a never-ending role. This leads to physical, mental and emotional exhaustion. This typically happens because caregivers usually neglect self-care.
An empty well cannot fill others bucket with fresh thirst-quenching water.Swati Vyas
Here is a simple checklist, to help you identify & assess your stress level in your caregiver journey:
Feel that you have to do it all yourself. Feel that you should be doing more.
Spend less (or no) time with family and friends.
No longer engage in activities that you once enjoyed.
Worry about the person you care for – their safety and well being.
Feel anxious about money.
Worry about making the right health care decisions.
Minimize the impact of the disease.
Deny how the disease affects you and your family.
Feel a sense of loss for the relationship you once had with the person who is ill.
Feel frustrated or angry when caring for your loved one.
Are beginning to experience mental or physical health effects.
1-3 = You are coping well – keep it up.
4-8 = You are in dangerous territory – let’s talk.
9+ = You and your loved one are at risk – find a caregiver mentor ASAP.
(Adapted from Alzheimer’s Association Caregiver Stress Check)