According to the Office of Women’s Health within the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services Caring for your loved one at home disproportionately affects women with increased levels of stress. They note that caregivers who care for someone with an illness, injury, or disability. Caregiving can be rewarding, but it can also be challenging. Stress from caregiving is common. Women especially are at risk for the harmful health effects of caregiver stress. These health problems may include depression or anxiety. There are ways to manage caregiver stress.

Here are some tips the Office provides to help you prevent or manage caregiver stress:

  • Find caregiving resources in your community to help you. Many communities have adult daycare services or respite services to give primary caregivers a break from their caregiving duties.
  • Ask for and accept help. Make a list of ways others can help you. Let helpers choose what they would like to do. For instance, someone might sit with the person you care for while you do an errand. Someone else might pick up groceries for you.
  • Join a support group for caregivers. You can find a general caregiver support group or a group with caregivers who care for someone with the same illness or disability as your loved one. You can share stories, pick up caregiving tips, and get support from others who face the same challenges as you do.
  • Take time for yourself. Stay in touch with family and friends, and do things you enjoy with your loved ones.
  • Take care of your health. Find time to be physically active on most days of the week, choose healthy foods, and get enough sleep.
  • See your doctor for regular checkups. Make sure to tell your doctor or nurse you are a caregiver. Also, tell her about any symptoms of depression or sickness you may have.

The caring staff at Birch Gardens knows how difficult the decision is to move your loved one into a senior care community. When you are ready to ask questions, or come by to visit us, or just want to talk, we will be happy to accommodate you at any time. When availability exists we also offer a respite stay to give you a much needed break. Feel free to call us at 540-886-5007 or email