|10 minute respite
Close your eyes.
make some tea.
savor a treat.
read a book
|do your research Investigate available resources.
Check out links on this site...we did some legwork for you.
|Prevent problems by taking good care of yourself
Don't let yourself get too HUNGRY,
or too TIRED.
Doctor- Dentist- Chiropractor
Keep your own maintenance health appointments.
Optometrist once a year. Early detection of many health conditions, such as
high blood pressure, diabetes and Alzheimer's may be discovered by your
Woman's Well visit with mammogram & pap smear once a year.
Keep medications up to date. Get thyroid and diabetes screening
Get your teeth cleaned at the Dentist twice a year.
Get regular adjustments at a Chiropractor to maintain good health.
If YOU get sick, WHO will care for your family member?
Three little words...
Remember during the challenges of caregiving, do yourself a favor...
keep it simple.
keep phone date. Busy schedules widen the closeness we crave.
If a (or more) close friend can agree to set a specific time to talk each
week, the isolation melts away.
Maybe you can plan before your caregivee usually wakes up,
during a TV program caregivee enjoys,
or after everyone else is in bed. Just do your best to assure privacy.
I prefer to use land-line in a quiet room. Agree to LISTEN to each other.
Avoid MULTI-TASKING during this very important appointment to
sustain your sanity.
The dishes and laundry will still be there when you are done talking.
Give yourself permission.
make grilled cheese. Every Thursday I make grilled cheese and
tomato soup for my friend, who comes to our house during her lunchhour.
It gives us time to catch up and gives us a break from the phone. My
caregivee naps during this time.
Make a point to "make grilled cheese" for
a positive person in YOUR life on a regular basis.
|keep in touch. E-mail is great. It is efficient.
Yet some folks are so swamped with spam they don't bother to check e-mail often.
Encourage your friends to create a special e-mail address
for personal correspondence. No surfing, searching,on-line chatting or
contest applications,or forwarding (negotiable) for THIS address.
Most internet service providers offer up to 10 free e-mail accounts.
Send e-cards and "thinking of you" blurbs often. Visit our greetings page.
hand write letter politicians dub'em as "butterfinger" letters.
Hand write a real letter on a nice card or stationery to a friend, family
member or Representative about issues that matter to you.
American Greetings has a great Create and Print service available on-line.
You can custom craft a card, then add hand written note if you choose.
talk to neighbor.
Walk out the door and knock (or maybe you better call first!)
Enjoy a short visit with a neighbor. Breathe some fresh air. Get in
some face-to-face time with a different human being.Present them
with baked goods or share some other treat.
Remember to take a shower before you go...if you can!
turn noises off. sometimes just the drone of the TV can wear you out!
Remember the quality of what you are watching. Choose positive viewing.
Loud yelling and negative impressions make an impression on your pyche,
even if you think it is only background noise.
take out a little time for some quiet.
go to bed. Sleep when you can.
Develop good sleep habits.
Established a regular bedtime,
and a regular wake time.
|choose your battles.
ask yourself,"Is it worth the drama?"
Will the issue bring immediate harm to self or others?
In a week, will the outcome of the issue at hand matter? In five years?
Words can HURT. Words can HEAL.
Think before you speak and weigh the power of your words.
|leave the room. when tempers begin to flair,step away from the
caregiven. Walk to the other side of the house, look out the window
at the birds, download a movie..Or better yet, step outside if possible.
Scream into pillow. Get on the treadmill or stationery bike.
Do what you need to do.Process the anger. Return calmed.
be well fed. Remember to feed yourself.
Nourish yourself physically, intellectually and spiritually.
feed the fire. Think of your mind,body & spirit as a wood fire...
throw on a log often during the day to keep the fire burning steadily
Try eating something every three hours to help keep blood sugar stable.
Ingest quality foods. Try organic vegetables.
Adjust to low maintenance, healthful, joyful nurturing.
sing in shower remember to TAKE a shower!
let the water wash the worries away.
update legal issues. revise contingency plans,
how will you begin your next chapter of your life story?
Thinking about continuing your education? Click "here" to review a
guide to writing a scholarship application. Choke when writing a
Grad School application? TIPS
write a resume. learn on-line
It will rain. ... and the ROOF WILL LEAK! ...the washing machine will stop
beyond repair... the vehicle will break down at the worst time.
Prepare for "rainy day" and learn strategies for financial drought.
Build Back-up Plan
Contribute to a ROTH IRA/CD and add to an emergency savings account.
Consider sources of income and lending resources. Visit our "dollars" page.
breathe, breathe, breathe...
paper, scissors, rock All the paper work of "business as usual"
multiplies at a geometric rate when family caregiving. Paperwork can suck the
life right out of you. Prevent "self-anger"... When you bring the mail in the door,
touch item once... remember "paper" is urgent and important
business and personal correspondence that must be paid or answered. Either
answer it, pay it or file it in a drawer, box, or "IN" box on tabletop or desk.
remember "scissors" . Shred junk mail immediately...put shredder by the door.
Shred envelopes (make sure you have appropriate return addresses recorded, or
tear off and tape to letter.)It is important to shred all receipts and things you do not
want to keep to protect your identity. Recycle shredded paper in your local school
paper recycling container. remember "rock" as finished business. File your EOBs
paid bills,receipts and other "keepers" in files. If you are leaning towards a
paper-reduced existence, accessories are available to directly scan information
on receipts and business cards into your software system. Research.
|guilt, angst, resentment: it's REAL and takes on a life of its OWN!
Deal with it! Vent with a good friend. Venting to a listening ear heals! Process negative
emotions. Fostering them will only rob you of quality time on this planet. Take a break.
Enlist alternative caregivers that can give you even 20 minutes to yourself.
Unbelievable the difference it can make.
|maintain healthy boundaries learn to say no, first.
You have enough to do. You are going in enough directions.
Assess what you WANT to do...don't be "guilted" into doing something that will
sap your energy from your primary responsibilities.
|"people with fur" Studies show, people who have close relationships with
family pets recover faster from surgery, maintain lower blood pressure and that
children can learn positive social skills from their interactions with pets. Never
underestimate the contribution canine companionship brings to the house-bound.
Our dog wakes me up if my Mom needs attention during the night, and alerts me to
situations during the day. Read one caregiver's story about her dad and his dog.
|write it down "if it isn't documented, it didn't happen."
We lose patience with ourselves when we forget. Simple solution.
write down "what" & "when" meds are given, food is eaten,
blood pressure, blood sugar, treatments completed, questions for next
Doctor's visit, routine for "substitute" caregiver.
analyze, prioritize, deputize write down every expense, household
goods consumed, the time it takes to get your person ready. Outline the
steps you take. If you give them morning meds while they are on the toilet,
so when they drink alot of water or choke, they are in the proper place to
urinate, write it down. Do this today. Study your notes. Do this tomorrow
and the next day. After 4 days, analyze , prioritize. Recruit help and
deputize your help to implement the routine. Numbers and goods written
down will help you clearly ask for specific things that will help someone
share your responsibilities. Invest in devices to make your life easier.
|trust your gut if you feel you or your caregivee is not getting proper care,
please speak up! You have the right to change your physician,
and you have the
right to leave or transfer out of a hospital or nursing home.
If you do not agree with a physician's philosophy or viewpoint,
ex: "old people are disposable" ...
find a doctor who is "on the same page" as you.
Do it now. A medical crisis is not the best time to change physicians.
You will have difficulty finding a "back-up" at the last minute.
Ask neighbors, friends how they like their physician.
It took us three years (and three doctors!)before we found a great doctor,,
after our physician of decades, retired.
meds, conditions, doc right now, sit down and write down a list
medication/dosage/condition and the doctor's phone number(s)
Keep a copy in your wallet. My Medication List Wallet Card pdf
Put a copy on the refrigerator for emergency
Read 10 Things to do... and take care of them NOW!
hair in drain, hangnails,brittle nails, whiskers where they weren't.
All badges of caregiving. Stress, Chemo, Aging all effect hair growth.
You feel better when you nurture yourself. Try some quality implements
and innovative products "as seen on TV" for boosting hair growth,
strengthening nails and inhibiting growth of unwanted hair. Click HAIR
|sight sound touch Each person processes information differently.
Chances are, if a person says "look here" or "the way I see it", they tend to learn
things best by reading or seeing how it is done.
"Sounds good" tends to be said by a person who learns best listening to
instructions, audiobooks, making up songs with reminding clues.
People who learn best by doing, tend to use phrases like "in a heartbeat."
Pay attention. Your message will be received best when you adjust your
language to the individual, especially if their communication skills are effected by
stroke or mild dementia.
adjust your tempo When someone does not understand, try speaking
slower, instead of louder. Some brains take more time to process information.
"hiccup for me" tired of hearing hiccups? she is tired of hiccupping!
Say "hiccup for me!" in a cheery voice... It works for us!
A tip from a 32-year-experienced primary school educator.
do it now procrastination will tire you out faster than most things.
Just do it. Spend 7 to 11 minutes on that difficult thing. Come back later
and spend 7 to 11 minutes again. Set a timer.
chunk it down into more manageable portions. Being overwhelmed by
the mere size of a task is very discouraging. Remember Einstein's theory
applies..."An object in motion, stays in motion. An object at rest, stays
at rest." Get started. Before you know it, the task is completed.
tears, boogers, spit many meds and conditions dry us out.
Rehydrate eyes,once or twice a day with artificial tears, nose, with
saline nose spray and mouth,with a good quality, alcohol-free
mouthwash, or warm salt water rinse.
Brush your teeth (every time) after you eat. drink water, drink
coffee, drink tea. Keep hydrated. Do the "pinch" test. If you
pinch the back of your hand, or forearm, and it "tents" (it doesn't snap
back) you need to intake more fluids, and ingest more juicy fruits like
watermelon, oranges, grapes. Adding a cool mist humidifier helps
prevent nose-bleeds for some people.
When taking antibiotics, prevent diarrhea by eating yogurt with active
cultures. Antibiotics kill off beneficial bacteria in the digestive tract.
Active yogurt cultures restore the natural order. There are some
tasty "sugar free" varieties available.
ReDuce ReUse ReCycle
Reduce the amount and toxicity of trash you discard.
Reuse containers and products;
repair what is broken or give it to someone who can repair it.
Recycle as much as possible, which includes
buying products with recycled content.
it's always somethin' remembering the wisdom of Gilda Radner's
character, Roseann Rosanna Danna, if it isn't one thing, it's another.
The most control over any situation is our reaction.
We are responsible for our own feelings. Try not to take it personally.
use positive phrases
say "please remember"which replaces "don't forget."
The brain registers the action, and rules out the negative.
Imagine a monkey NOT riding a bicycle.
Good clues in...desired actions out.
Remember to say "PLEASE" and "THANK YOU."
plan for action pack a backpack with essentials for three days away
from home. Meds,change of clothes, hygiene products, snacks.
One for you. One for your caregivee. One for the family dog.
Pack a copy of medication list and contact phone numbers.
Rotate snacks once a month. Have small notebook and pens, some
postcards & notecards, one dollar bills and quarters for vending
machines, a deck of cards, book, booklight and flashlight, batteries,cell
phone charger. Keep them near the door. Take when you go to the
emergency room, on an "out-trip," or have to evacuate due to extended
Tired of that old notebook PC? Help the environment by trading it in and receive a TigerDirect Gift Certificate.
Use the Gift Certificate for a new notebook or other product purchase online at TigerDirect.com
|read the directions. especially on medications. Some require empty stomachs.
With some, you need to wait one hour to eat, or four hours before taking vitamins.
follow the directions.
use a timer when you need one. Keep it simple. Use the tools you have on hand.
People-to-people lending. It's an old idea that's new again.
People who need money request it, and other people bid for the privilege of lending it to them.
Prosper makes sure everything is safe, fair and easy. (you need good credit standing.)
laugh out loud
get goofy play dominoes,
building blocks, scrabble,
"EYE SPY!",Old Maid, UNO, ...
toss a nerf ball back & forth...
lighten up and don't be
so serious all the time.
NeatReceipts Mobile Scanner is a scanner and software solution that
automatically organizes your receipts,business cards and other documents in a
Perfect for individual professionals, small businesses and other highly organized
people,i.e. family caregivers!
|use your words. We often "lose our words" in time of stress.
Take a breath...THINK...and use your words in an even tone.
Remember our caregivee often loses their words.
In our close proximity...24/7 world,
we must remember to BUILD some HUMOR and LAUGHTER
into our days & nights.
Let's remember to be gentle with one another in here!
YOUR WORDS may be the
only words heard...all day long.
plan for future
Regular 1" wide x
Mini 7/8" wide and
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ears, shoulders, hips
remind caregivee to line up ears, shoulders & hips in a straight line.
use this to coach when they start leaning forward while walking.
maintain proper support.
protect your back, Posey Transport Belt
do something fun!