Page 17 - Senior Housing Directory 2020 South Central Michigan
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 SENIOR HOUSING DIRECTORY 2020
In addition to siblings, also consider that cousins, nieces, and nephews may be eager to help. Don't forget to include friends, distant relatives, neighbors, and acquaintances, such as members of your parents' civic or religious groups. Not all of these folks will be able to help, but many will get involved if you ask. Some, in fact, may feel hurt or left out if you don't seek their assistance.
Involve your children. When you are sandwiched between the needs of parents and children you may feel pulled from both sides. Be honest with your children about the situation, and listen to their concerns. Encourage their ques- tions, and answer them thoroughly. Carve out time for fun activities with your children, but also request their help in providing attention or care.
When you're caring for others, it's critical that you first take care of yourself. By not doing so, you put yourself at risk of exhaustion, health problems, and even total burnout.
Put your physical needs first. Eat nutritious meals. Don't give in to stress-driven urges for sweets or overindulge in alcohol. Get enough shut-eye; if you have trouble sleeping
at night, try napping during the day. Schedule regular medical checkups. Find time to exercise, even if it means you have to ask someone
else to provide care while you work out. If you experience symptoms of depression – ex- treme sadness, trouble concentrating, apathy, hopelessness, thoughts about death – talk to a medical professional.
Connect with friends. Isolation increases stress. Getting together regularly with friends and relatives can keep negative emotions at bay.
Call on community resources. Consider asking a geriatric care manager to coordinate all aspects of your loved one's care. Other service providers, including home health aides, homemakers, and home repair services, can shoulder some of the many responsibilities of caregiving. Volunteers or staff from faith-based organizations or civic groups might visit, cook, or help you with driving.
Take a break. You deserve it. Plus, your ailing family member might benefit from someone else's company. Think about respite care by friends, relatives, or volunteers. Or schedule a weekend, or longer vacation, by turning to a home health agency, skilled nursing facility, or assisted living residence; these facilities accept short-term residents based on availability. Adult day centers, which usually operate five days a week, provide care in a group setting for older adults who need supervision.
Deal with your feelings. Bottling up your
emotions takes a toll on your psyche – and even on your physical well-being. Share feelings of frustration with friends and family. Seek support from co-workers who are in a similar situation. Make an appointment with a professional coun- selor, or join a caregiver support group.
Find time to relax. Doing something you enjoy, such as reading, walking, or listening to music, can recharge your batteries. Some care- givers meditate or use relaxation techniques such as deep breathing or visualizing a positive place. If you're religious, you might find that prayer can be a powerful tool.
Just say no. Accept the fact that you simply can't do everything! Resist the urge to take on more activities, projects, or financial obligations than you can handle.
If someone asks you to do something that will stretch you too thin, explain honestly why you can’t – and don't feel guilty.
Stay positive. Do your best to avoid negativity. Hold a family meeting or call an elder care mediator to resolve conflicts with siblings and other relatives. Instead of dwelling on what you can't do, pat yourself on the back for how much you are doing, and focus on the rewards of caring for someone you love.
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                          BARRY COUNTY
COMMISSION ON AGING
The following services are available through the Barry County Commission on Aging for persons 60 years and older.
   • Sr Center Activities • Homecare Services
• SMC Restaurant Dining • Volunteer Opportunities
• Four Congregate Dining Site Locations
• Home Delivered Meals
• Home Repair Service
• Adult Day Services
• Medicare / Medicaid Info
     Barry County Commission on Aging
320 West Woodlawn Avenue Hastings, MI 49058
Phone: (269) 948-4856 Fax: (269) 948-3336 E-Mail: bccoa@barrycounty.org www.barrycountycoa.org
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