Lucia and David* like to have dinner on Thursday nights at their country club in Johnson County, as they have done for years. But David’s dementia has progressed to the point that Lucia isn’t sure if he’ll remember the names of acquaintances who stop by to say hello. She has to be vigilant in order to keep him from repeating himself to the waiter, she orders his food, makes sure he keeps his placemat and clothes clean, and helps him find the restroom.
Naturally, she drives to and from the club, and helps him get ready for bed after their evening out. She organizes his medications; she picks up his clothes and is often up with him at night when he has bouts of anxiety, asking her rounds of questions. In short, Lucia finds that she is exhausted, and she’s not able to get the rest that she needs to stay healthy.
Caring for a loved one who has dementia is a constant challenge. It requires vigilance and stamina, which can take a toll on the person who is doing the care. Caregiving can result in burnout, or worse, disease.
Look for signs of caregiver burnout like these:
- Depression, desire to isolate, feelings of hopelessness
- Constant fatigue, headaches
- Getting sick more often
- Rapid change in appetite or weight
- Anxiety or panic attacks
If any of these symptoms are occurring in your life, contact us at Kansas City Homecare. We can do an in-home care assessment that will help us to tailor a caregiving plan that can help with a loved one who has dementia. We are here to help keep everyone healthy— caregivers included.
*Names have been changed