Caring for a family member or a friend can be extremely rewarding but it can also be emotionally and physically draining. It is very important for someone who is caring for a loved one to give themselves regular breaks to rest so they have time to relax and don’t burn out. These breaks can be to do regular everyday activities, to just relax or to take a holiday. Taking a break can benefit both the carer and the individual receiving care.

 

Benefits of respite care include:

Reduce Stress

Being a caregiver to a family member or a loved one can often make you feel more stress than most individuals which could eventually lead to caregiver stress syndrome. This can happen when your duties of being a carer can become very overwhelming and end up overpowering your own personal needs. Respite care can offer carers with small breaks to focus on their own responsibilities and health needs.

Offers Support

Caregivers often face the problem with not having much support from family and friends, so they end up doing lots of the work with nobody to fall back on in an emergency. If a carer falls ill suddenly or needs to be somewhere in an emergency, it is good to know that on demand respite care will help with support on demand. Respite care will giver carers the help they need quickly and efficiently. They could also help the carer by giving them caregiving advice and tips if they feel overwhelmed and if they have no experience caring for those with illnesses or impairments.

Reduces Friction

Carers and their loved ones can often need a break from each other as they spend all of their time together. Introducing respite care can offer caregivers and their loved ones the opportunity to experience the company of somebody different and relieve any friction that may have been building under the surface.

Increases Social Engagement

It is important that caregivers avoid being isolated. If they withdraw from social activities that don’t include their loved one due to their caring responsibilities, they could experience an emotional breakdown at a later time. However, having respite care can allow caregivers with the opportunity to take some time off to go out with friends, attend events, go out for dinner or go on holiday to maintain a social bubble with their friends.

Maintain Identity

More often than not, carers push away their identity to care for their loved ones instead of finding a balance between their caregiving duties and their personal life. It is common for carers to only talk about their life as a carer and their responsibilities with their elderly loved one. Respite care can help in giving carers time away from the person they care for to regain their identity and realise that caring for a loved one (although rewarding) is something they do and not somebody they are. They can also visit other members of their family, join in activities and if they feel like it would benefit them, participate in a support group to help them regain their identity.

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