5 Mental Benefits of Caring for an Aging Loved One

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Positive Psychological Effects of Being a Family Caregiver in SARASOTA, FL

From increased stress and anxiety to a lack of personal time, there’s a lot of focus on the potentially negative psychological aspects of being a family caregiver. But there are some equally impactful positive psychological effects associated with this role that can be beneficial and healthy. Here are five of them.

1. Lowering Levels of Depression

Caregiver stress is often associated with depression. However, according to the American Psychological Association, some caregivers actually report lower levels of depression. This is more likely to be the case if you’re a family caregiver with an ability to:

• Benefit from personal coping mechanisms
• Find ways to take breaks and refresh personally
• Handle stressful situations effectively

If providing care for your loved one has become challenging, consider hiring a professional caregiver. Families looking for top-rated Sarasota elderly home care providers can reach out to Home Care Assistance. From respite care to specialized Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care, there are many ways we can make life easier for seniors and their loved ones.

2. Emotionally Connecting on an Adult Level

If the family member you’re caring for is an older parent, caregiving gives you the opportunity to form a meaningful adult relationship with Mom or Dad. The various conversations you have and the different activities you do together can allow you to connect on an adult level, which can be emotionally rewarding for everyone involved. You’ll also have a chance to address and let go of any lingering issues that may have affected your relationship with your parent in the past.

3. Forming Pleasant New Memories

With family caregiving, there are plenty of opportunities to form new memories and enjoy moments of happiness. This could happen when recalling fond memories or going for walks around the neighborhood. Happy memories can also be created with care based on things you know put your loved one in a good mood, such as cooking, working on arts and crafts projects, or tending to a garden. Ultimately, you may find yourself laughing, smiling, and cherishing the creation of new memories with your loved one, and he or she may feel the same way.

4. Having a Sense of Accomplishment

Some family caregivers experience psychological satisfaction and growth from the experience of regularly caring for and interacting with an older loved one. This can often be achieved by focusing on what’s been accomplished instead of dwelling on minor setbacks or other challenges. For instance, you might appreciate that your loved one is responding well to home-based therapies or getting around better with new assistive devices. There’s also the sense of accomplishment that comes from simply knowing your care efforts are appreciated and you’re doing something good for someone you love.

Caring for a senior loved one can be rewarding, but it can also be overwhelming for family caregivers who have other responsibilities they need to focus on. Whether you need respite from your caregiving duties or your aging loved one needs live-in care, Sarasota, FL, Home Care Assistance can meet your family’s care needs. Our dedicated caregivers are available around the clock to provide transportation to doctor’s appointments, ensure seniors take their prescribed medications, and help with a variety of tasks in and outside the home.

5. Developing a Healthy Perspective

Many caregivers have both positive experiences and moments of stress and strain. However, a positive psychological balance is still possible if you maintain a healthy perspective. On the not-so-good days, realize your loved one is likely not doing things that frustrate you on purpose. Instead, look at the big picture and accept the challenges of caregiving while also finding comfort and joy in the other aspects of your life. Some family caregivers also develop a healthy perspective by:

• Realizing what’s really important in life
• Accepting what cannot be changed
• Having a strong support system 

One of the most challenging tasks of helping an elderly relative age in place safely and comfortably is researching agencies that provide home care. Turn to Home Care Assistance for reliable, high-quality in-home care for aging adults. We offer 24-hour live-in care for seniors who require extensive assistance, and we also offer respite care for family caregivers who need a break from their caregiving duties. For reliable in-home care services, contact us at (941) 702-5525 today.

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