Here is some Caregiver Survival Tips for the holidays. These may seem like basic information, but they can be very valuable to a care giver. They can be used by anyone who wants to better understand what their loved one is going through. The following may be helpful in understanding the symptoms of anxiety or mental illness and how to best provide support and assistance.
First, when traveling, it is important to remember that, while there are certain things that need to be done in order to make your holiday goes as smoothly as possible, you must also take care of yourself. Take time to relax with a massage or hot bath, listen to music, or watch a good movie. While you are enjoying your time away from home, it is also important to spend time with your loved one. If possible, try to stay as close as possible to your family during your break from care giving. This will help everyone to get the most out of their time spent together.
Second, when traveling, make sure that you have extra supplies on hand to provide for someone who may need them. For example, take along a flashlight and some tiki lamps. You may think these items are for decoration only, but you never know when someone in your travels might have a seizure or other emergency situation. Carry these supplies on board so that you can be quickly reached if that is the case.
Third, set aside a special time to be together when your loved one is away from home. This could be a time to read a book, go out for a walk, visit the gym, or go to the mall. Whatever activities make your beloved happy and feel safe is a great time to spend together. Just remember, though, that it is important to maintain your personal routines while care giving so that your loved one maintains their mental wellness during their time away from home.
Fourth, be careful about what you pack for your family member or caretaker for Christmas or for any other holiday. Most children will find a lot of the gifts they receive during this time very exciting, but parents should keep in mind that the same things may be dangerous for a child during this time of year. For instance, toys with small parts that are loose are often very dangerous during holiday festivities. Have your child check each gift to ensure it does not have a loose part. A similar concern is Christmas tree decorations. Many of these decorations contain small needles that can easily break off and cause injury to young children.
Fifth, do not leave young children alone at home during this holiday season. Anyone who leaves a child unattended is putting them in harm’s way. This applies even to elderly relatives who have become too familiar with the routine of caring for others over the years. In fact, there is an entire holiday called the “Sudden Age Syndrome” that is caused by leaving children and elderly relatives alone at home over the holidays. The risk of accidental death is significantly increased if children are left unattended.
Sixth, don’t try to do too much on your own during the holiday. Although you may have many special touches to help you with your holiday celebration, try to leave most of the tasks of preparing food, cleaning, shopping and other duties to your children, as you will still need some close supervision. A caregiver who tries to do too much may not realize how much extra work they are putting his or herself through.
Finally, try to stay happy and positive. If a caregiver makes a mistake by showing anger at a child or failing to give their full attention during the special time of year, then the entire atmosphere can be ruined. Caregivers must remember they are there to help and provide support for their relatives. By approaching your special time of year with a positive attitude, you will be well on your way to ensuring a successful holiday for all involved.