The content in this blog is based on my experiences and the guidance I have received from my Care Team determined by my individual and evolving needs. Before beginning, trying, or experimenting with anything mentioned in this blog, you

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Three Pieces of Advice

Nov. 19.  Top Three Tuesday.  Give three pieces of advice you would give to a caregiver.

I am also a professional caregiver, and I train others to take care of our patients.  In my personal life, have been on both sides of the care giving relationship.  I took care of my best friend and both of my parents before they passed away.  And I have days where my parents - now my sister and her husband take care of me.  So I think that I have a slightly different perspective than most spoonies

The first piece of advice I always give someone new is that someone's condition or illness is -not- their responsibility.  Providing care is a big role to take but if the person becomes sicker it is NOT because the caregiver is doing anything wrong.  Sometimes things will get worse, sometimes things will get better.  I feel that sometimes caregivers are bullied into voicing a rose-colored-glasses view on things so no one will think they are doing a poor job. 

The second piece of advice I usually give is to carve out time for themselves.  Not just 10 minutes for a hot shower or a cup of coffee, but some real time.  An hour - at least.  The caregiver needs to be able to rest, read, drink a cup of coffee - do whatever he/she needs to recharge.

The last piece of advice I tend to offer is to have a notebook on hand.  Writing down questions or odd symptoms can come in handy at doctor appointments - especially if the caregiver is not the one taking the patient to the doctor.  Also, during doctor appointments, notes can be taken as well to help communicate with the entire care team.  


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