7 Tips to Help Caregivers Feel Less Depressed
This pandemic has forced many to get into isolation. Coupled with a lot of uncertainties, many find themselves feeling more anxious and depressed. Older adults and caregivers are among the susceptible groups. They feel isolated, agitated, and withdrawn.
If you’re a caregiver and has been having all these negative thoughts and emotions these past months, the following tips may help relieve your anxiety and stress:
- Stay informed but do not get obsessed with the news.
It’s important to stay informed and know the different ways to protect yourself and your family BUT do not get too obsessed about it.
Get your facts from trusted sources such as the World Health Organization (WHO), CDC, and your local health department. As much as possible, steer away from sensationalized news especially from social media.
- Maintain a regular routine.
In this time of uncertainty, it is very important to follow a routine. You can find comfort from having a structure and predictability.
Get enough sleep.
As a caregiver, it may be challenging to get the right amount and quality of sleep especially with the added worries during this pandemic. But getting sufficient rest and sleep is one of the best ways to boost your immune system and improve your overall well-being.
If you’re struggling to fall and stay asleep, being or staying active and practicing relaxation techniques such as meditation and yoga can help.
Don’t be too hard on yourself.
The pandemic has created a new normal for us. This forced us to adjust to a lot of lifestyle changes, which we are practicing for years. So, don’t be too hard on yourself.
When you find yourself doing a lot of self-criticisms, step back, take a deep breath, and remind yourself to lighten up. Do positive self-talk to break the cycle. Speak more kindly to yourself, the same kind way you talk to a friend.
Create a backup plan.
The thought of getting sick to the point of not being able to take care of your ‘patient’ can be scary and can trigger feelings of anxiety. Combat this fear by being proactive and creating a backup plan while you’re well.
- Stay connected with family and friends.
You may not be able to be with your family and friends physically but try to stay connected. Have someone you can express your feelings and needs, be it through telephone, e-mail, or social media.
You can also sign up for support groups. Many of which offer emotional support to members through Zoom meetings.
- Don’t be embarrassed to seek professional help.
If you’ve tried almost everything but you are still feeling overwhelmed, speaking professional help can be a good idea. Don’t feel ashamed to seek help. Remember, you cannot pour from an empty cup.
By taking care of your needs, you are making yourself better in taking good care of other people.