Monday, April 8, 2013

Sleep and the Caregiver.

Sounds like a fairy tale story, right?? Sometimes it is. Whether you are an on-site or long distance caregiver, your sleep is definitely affected by a loved ones medical or mental issue. I found some advice on "Caregiver Confessions" with tips on getting a better nights sleep.

Recognize that you're not in a sleep-supportive situation. Caregivers often fail to realize how much tension and anxiety builds up during the day. The body holds this stress and adds it to whatever issues your loved one has that may also be upending your odds of a good night's rest.

Target the tension. Spend time in the morning and, especially, at night, simply sitting still and breathing deeply. A few slow inhalations and exhalations will literally slow your heart rate and lower your blood pressure, making your body more sleep-ready.

Keep moving through the day. There's a strong association between getting exercise by day and sleeping better at night. Even two short walks of five to ten minutes each can improve your ability to rest. Can't get out of the house? Try walking stairs.

Note the diet-sleep connection. Did you know that food cravings for salty, fatty, high-carb snacks are linked to poor sleep?
(picture from Leeza's Place website)

Please check out this page as there are a variety of videos to watch done by TV and radio personality, Leeza Gibbons. The videos include: Family is Being Torn Apart, When You're Feeling Guilt, When You Rarely See Friends, When You Resent Being a Caregiver, to name a few. She also has a website, Leeza's Place, a gathering place and resource center for caregivers.


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ElderCarelink email posts 4 signs that should not be overlooked by you, the caregiver, or a close family member or friend. They report that even though the immediate caregiver may not be helping in direct care, the mind is never far from the needs of the older person, thinking about meals, falling, medications. Take the opinion of a family member or friend if they are telling you that you are stressed. Four signs: you skip your own physicals; you isolate yourself from others; you eat and/or drink too much for good health; you are short tempered with the elder, your spouse or your children. If any or all of these sound familiar, take a break no matter how short in order to recharge. For more information on caregiver stress see ElderCarelink


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A Caregiver's Poem

I was looking through a 'Caregiver's Blog: Senior Care Support' and came across a poem that was shared by a writer, Dana, from the blog. The poem was written by Becky Netherland and Dana's grandmother shared it with her. I thought it was great and there is not much to say about it - just read!!! Enjoy!!

Grandma’s Pearls of Wisdom:
(picture from Caregivers Blog)

I’ve traveled paths you’ve yet to walk
Learned lessons old and new
And now this wisdom of my life
I’m blessed to share with you
Let kindness spread like sunshine
Embrace those who are sad
Respect their dignity, give them joy
And leave them feeling glad
Forgive those who might hurt you
And though you have your pride
Listen closely to their viewpoint
Try to see the other side
Walk softly when you’re angry
Try not to take offense
Invoke your sense of humor
Laughter’s power is immense!
Express what you are feeling
Your beliefs you should uphold
Don’t shy away from what is right
Be courageous and be bold
Keep hope right in your pocket
It will guide you day by day
Take it out when it is needed
When it’s near, you’ll find a way
Remember friends and family
Of which you are a precious part
Love deeply and love truly
Give freely from your heart
The world is far from perfect
There’s conflict and there’s strife
But you still can make a difference
By how you live your life
And so I’m very blessed to know
The wonders you will do
Because you are my granddaughter
And I believe in you.

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