7 Ways to Beat Caregiver Stress During the Holidays

Sunrise Senior Living  |  December 8, 2017
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Decking the halls or hosting seasonal celebrations can present a time management challenge for all of us. For already overwhelmed caregivers, however, the added pressures of the season can be downright exhausting. 

Four in ten family caregivers say they just can’t manage it all on their own when the holidays roll around. Not asking for help can cause caregivers to withdraw and avoid celebrating the holidays altogether.

But caregivers deserve to celebrate the holidays, too. They need time to relax and enjoy family and friends.

Here are a few ways caregivers can participate in the holidays without experiencing burnout or depression.

Preventing Holiday Related Caregiver Overload

  1. Ask for and accept help: As we head into peak holiday season, it is important for family caregivers to ask for and accept help. Ask a relative or friend to pick up a few gifts while they are doing their own shopping. Or, ask a church volunteer to stay with your loved one so you can enjoy a holiday event with family and friends. In-home care agencies and senior living communities offer respite services that might also give you the extra time you need this holiday season.
  2. Adapt holiday traditions: While you may have traditionally loved hosting a formal sit-down holiday dinner for the entire family, consider adapting it to a celebration that’s easier to manage. A potluck or a cocktail party, for example, can be simpler to host.
  3. Be kind to yourself: Many family caregivers struggle with feelings of inadequacy even during the best of times. The holidays can further exacerbate this issue. Try to use the holiday season to change the way you talk to yourself and acknowledge the hard work you’ve done.
  4. Take ten: While it may seem counterintuitive, exercise can help you feel less stressed. Taking ten minutes during the middle of the day for a quick walk might be just the stress-buster you need.
  5. Support group: Finding a support group of your peers to talk with can also help. In addition to being able to relate to your feelings and struggles, they may also have insight and resources to help you manage caregiving during the holidays. An online support group might be the most convenient way to connect.

Sunrise Senior Living Welcomes Holiday Visitors

We know families often use the holiday season as a time to assess and plan for a senior loved one’s health and wellness needs. Many times, that includes touring local assisted living communities.

If your family will be researching senior living options for someone you love, we invite you to visit Sunrise. Our communities look and feel especially festive during the holidays! Call a Sunrise community near you to arrange a private tour.