4 ways for caregivers to get a break

April 18, 2018

Being a caregiver, particularly at the end of someone’s life, can be a rewarding but also a demanding experience. Helping with tasks like cooking, cleaning, bathing, using the toilet, driving and other tough jobs mean that most caregivers give on average 20 hours of their time a week to the loved one that they are helping. Without the proper support for caregivers, it can be easy for stress to build up, which is why it is important that they are able at some point to have a break from their tasks. Here we will look at a few ways that caregivers can get a short rest.

Replacement care

Respite care can come in many forms. It could be that support workers or assistants take over your care for a short time at your home – often known as ‘replacement care’, or help for periods of the day to allow you to go and do something else such as meet your friends for lunch, or simply sit alone and read a book – whatever it is that allows you to relax.

Sitting and befriending services

Equally, some services and charities offer a sitting and befriending service where a trained individual spends time with the person that you provide care to while you go out and have a few hours away from home, or even just to visit your home to provide the both of you company. This service is usually free; however, they might be a small charge which should be explained to you by the charity or local service agency.

 Respite care

Alternatively, to support workers visiting your home, it may be that your loved one spends some time in a nursing home, where they are cared for while you take some time away from your usual tasks and responsibilities.

Respite care is a short-term stay, usually around 1-2 weeks in a care home. Sometimes respite is planned well in advance or is given in an emergency scenario such as to preserve the health or well-being of the caregiver. It might also be given if a patient is in need of certain support that can’t be given at home, such as after an operation. To arrange respite care, you will need a Carer’s Assessment, which is available through your local council. Click here to find details for your local council.

Holidays and other activities

Sometimes, getting a break doesn’t mean that you must do things independently. In fact, spending time with your loved one in a way that doesn’t feel like your typical ‘caregiver/patient’ situation can really help to ease stress on your relationship. This could be something as simple as a game of cards, right through to taking a short holiday somewhere.

Here at Cravens we help many people to formalise their funeral plans in advance. We offer four award winning plans that can be tailored to specific requirements and ensure that not only do you get the time and space you need to grieve, but also that your loved one gets the funeral they want and deserve.

To find out more, please contact us on 0151 228 3900, or leave us a message through our contact us page by clicking here.