The term ‘carer’ could apply to a wide variety of people. Carers can be professionals who visit the elderly at home, or who work in hospitals or care homes. Or, a carer could be a spouse, partner, family member or friend.
Whatever brought about your caregiver role, it is a sad reality that carers often lack adequate recognition and thus support for their difficult and all-consuming roles.
We advise the carer always to ensure they have someone to debrief with and to be supported by – a colleague or relative, for example. If you are living with the person you are caring for, it is a good idea to have an activity or plan scheduled either daily or weekly (whichever feels right) which gives you some respite from your caring duties.
It is important to look after yourself, even if the other person is your priority. You can only be a good carer by first caring for yourself.
Help for carers:
• Carers UK telephone helpline providing information is open on Mondays and Tuesday between 10am and 4pm – 0808 808 7777.
• Carers UK online forum to contact others in a similar position to your own https://www.carersuk.org/forum.
• Age UK have a helpline for carers: 0800 055 6112.
• Mind, the mental health charity, has useful aids here. You may not consider yourself mentally unwell but that doesn’t mean you won’t benefit from their advice in stressful periods. ..https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/helping-someone-else/carers-friends-family-coping-support/looking-after-yourself/#.XJ3_1ZieSUk.