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Preventing Caregiver Stress During the Holidays

By Dian Brannen, 9:00 am on

The holidays are here, and while this is a festive time full of cheerful decorations and family bonding, Home Care Assistance of the Lehigh Valley knows it can get stressful for even the jolliest of caregivers. Fortunately, you can cut the stress and enjoy the festivities by making sure to take advantage of the following time-tested strategies.

1. Delegate Responsibilities

Caregivers tend to have a problem with taking on more than they can handle. It is a natural tendency to want to say yes to every holiday request, but stop to consider whether you can realistically do it all. Decorating for the office party, cooking an entire holiday meal, and picking up a trunk full of packages are just a few tasks that can be broken down and delegated to others.

2. Focus on What Matters

In the past, you might have been able to prepare a four-course meal completely from scratch using your grandmother’s recipes, but now you just may no longer have the time. Instead of lamenting what you cannot do, focus on the things that make the holidays special. Take a tour of the neighborhood holiday lights instead of a hosting a crowded party, or take your loved one to a choir concert instead of your usual cabin vacation. By renewing your focus on quality time with your loved ones, you will be less likely to get caught up in the holiday hype.

3. Take a Spa Day

When things get too crazy, head to the spa or gym or wherever you find your peace. It may seem selfish at first when there is so much to do, but you will actually be able to accomplish more if you have some time to relax. If you are unable to get away, even a few minutes of quiet meditation can go a long way toward easing your stress.

4. Encourage Family Involvement

When the holidays hit, it is common for everyone to be too caught up in their own worries to notice that you may need some help. Be sure to reach out to other members of your family and let them know about any upcoming needs. For example, grandchildren can help to keep your parent busy while you finish decorating your home.

5. Plan a Vacation

The height of holiday season may seem like a strange time to plan a vacation, but having something to look forward to at the start of the new year can be refreshing. Start now and consider who can take over your caregiving duties, even if you only plan for a weekend getaway. If family members aren’t available, consider hiring a professional Lehigh Valley caregiver for your loved one. Then, focus on the future whenever your present gets too stressful. Rest and relaxation are only a short distance away.

If you could use additional support meeting your loved one’s care needs during this busy season, call Home Care Assistance at 484-350-3874. In addition to hourly and live-in care, we also offer Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s home care in the Lehigh Valley. Our caregivers are trained and experienced, our friendly Care Managers are available 24/7, and all care services are backed by a 100 percent satisfaction guarantee.