Page 7 - Senior Times South Central Michigan - February 2020 - 27-02
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Senior Times - February 2020 Page 7
By: Lisa Ottenhoff LMSW, ACSW, Practice Owner/Therapist
Understand the costs of caring.
  • Exhaustion, physical and/or emotional. • Reduced ability to feel sympathy and
Reaching out to others and accepting help from friends and family as well as connecting with others who are in similar situations are other strategies of self-care, which often help with preventing compas- sion fatigue or easing the intensity of it.
   Compassion fatigue is a unique form of burnout that affects people who are caring for others. It’s characterized by deep physical and emotional exhaustion and a pronounced change in the caregiver’s ability to feel empathy. It’s often marked by an increase in cynicism, loss of enjoyment in once pleasur- able activities, an increase in irritability, and can eventually transform into depression and stress-related illness.
• Anger and irritability.
• Increased use of substances.
• Dread of working with or taking care of the
• Diminished sense of enjoyment in the
Caregiver support groups can be education- al and very supportive and are great tool for the caregiver to manage their own self-care.
 Caregiving comes in many forms, it can be the spouse who is taking care of their partner whose memory and ability to care for them- selves continues to decline because of demen- tia; it can be the adult child of the parent who has a chronic medical condition who is in need of ongoing assistance with managing their health and maintaining at home, while the adult child is still working full time and par- enting their own children; or the parent who has a child with severe mental health issues. Caregivers can become victims of the continu- ing stress of meeting the often-overwhelming needs of their loved one. Those who work in the helping professions are prone to compas- sion fatigue as well.
anxiety, or irrational fears.
• Intrusive imagery or dissociation.
• Hypersensitivity or insensitivity to emotional
When compassion fatigue signs and symp- toms progress on the continuum, clinical depression and stress-related illnesses can
be and are often the outcomes. Compassion fatigue is a treatable problem and if early inter- vention and changes take place, depression and other illnesses can be prevented. Unfortunately compassion fatigue often goes unrecognized and other complications will arise a great deal of the time, which impact not only the caregiv- er, but also the loved one who they are taking care of as well. If you recognize the signs and symptoms in yourself or in someone you know and care about, reach out for help. Caregivers can talk to their own physician or the physi- cian of their loved one to get some direction and recommendations for treatment for their compassion fatigue. Quite often professional counseling can help caregivers manage with their struggles.
• Disruption to their world view, heightened
• Impaired ability to make decisions.
• Problems in personal relationships and
intimate connections with others.
Major factors that contribute to compassion fatigue are a lack of support and self-care. Caregivers often put their own needs behind their loved one’s needs and feel guilty for taking time out of their busy schedules to do things that are beneficial for themselves. They are often balancing multiple responsibilities and stressors in addition to their caregiving responsibilities.
 Compassion fatigue is a unique form of burnout that affects people who are caring for others. It often goes unrecognized and the symptoms are often minimized by the caregiver because of the commitment and loyalty they have for their loved one.
Some of the warning signs that may indi- cate that a caregiver is moving into the danger zone of compassion fatigue will include some of the following:
Recognizing and becoming aware of the signs of compassion fatigue and improved self-care are important factors of compassion fatigue prevention and treatment. The cost
of caring for others who are in pain whether physical or emotional, can be overwhelming and stressful, and recognizing the signs can help prevent the progression of compassion fatigue. The degree of the intensity of com- passion fatigue falls on a continuum and can depend on several factors including the care- giver’s current life circumstances and whether the caregiver has historically been able to develop healthy ways of coping with stressful situations that cause distress.
Recognizing and becoming aware of the signs of compassion fatigue, implementing and maintaining self-care strategies, and getting support can help prevent emotional exhaustion and can help caregivers remain empathetic, compassionate, and healthy.
Comforts of Home Counseling & Care Management LLC is located at 391 South Shore Drive, Suite 214, Battle Creek, MI, 49014. They can be reached at
 (269) 964-0153.
Albion Marshall Connector
Area Wide Transportation
Battle Creek Transit - Fixed Route
Community Action Senior Transportation
JTC Transportation Service LLC
Mobility 1 Transportation
Senior Transportation, DC Services LLC
Battle Creek
Marshall, Ablion
Southern Michigan
Battle Creek
Calhoun County- Battle Creek
Calhoun County Area
Southern Michigan
Michigan, Northern IN
Fixed Routes
Origination To Destination
Within 150 miles
Will Travel Out Of Michigan
(269) 441-5387
(269) 781-3975 or (517) 654-3000
(269) 679-6999
(269) 966-3474
(269) 565-4144
(269) 339-6928
(269) 430-5055
(517) 677-9262
M-F, 7am-12midnight
M-F, 7:30am-5:30pm
Available 24 hours/ day
M-F, 5:15am-6:45pm, Some Routes Sat, 9:15am-5pm
M-F, 8am-4:30pm
Daily 6am-8pm
By Appointment
By Appointment
$7 one-way
$1 one way for seniors, 60+; disabled & children 6-12, $2 adults/children 13+
Bills Medicare/Medicad
$0.60 seniors
$1 suggested cost share per ride, funded by Senior Millage
Wheelchair $35+$1.50/mile after 20miles, Ambulatory $25+$1.50/ mile after 20miles
Can bill some Medicad plans
Must have exact change, can receive tokens for future trips if you overpay
Rider responsible for any costs not covered
Must have exact change, 12 punch pass for $6, 48 punches for $24
Must schedule more than 24 hours in advance
10-15% Disc for ambulatory frequency
Starting from Tekonsha
  Alamo Transportation
Calhoun & Jackson Counties
(517) 494-0029
M-F, 7am-5pm
Bills Medicare/Medicad
  Alpha Medical Transport
Battle Creek Area
(844) 895-4809
By Appointment
Arranged through individual health insurance plans; direct pay not accepted
 Must schedule more than 24 hours in advance
 Battle Creek Tele-Transit
Battle Creek Area
Door-to-Door Service
(269) 966-3474
M-F, 5:15am-mid- night, Sat, 9:15am-5pm
$2 one-way for senior/disabled, Personal attendants ride free, $7 adults ($5 after 6:45pm)
Reservation Needed, 10 punch pass for $20, 20 punches for $40
Branch Area Transit Authority
Branch County
(517) 278-5889
Half Fare for Handicapped & Senior Citizens Over 60
 Weekly Subscriptions Available
 Community Action Senior Transportation
Calhoun County- Albion
Origination To Destination
(269) 565-4144
M,T,W,F, 9am-2:30pm
$1 suggested cost share per ride, funded by Senior Millage
 Must schedule more than 24 hours in advance
 Marshall Dial-A-Ride
(269) 781-3975
M-F, 7am-6pm
$1.50 one-way for seniors, 60+, disabled, children 5-12, $3.00 adults/children 13+
Free on Wed for seniors, age 60 and over
 Ready Ride Transportation
(616) 261-2400
By Appointment
Contact for Rates
 10% Discount for Veterans
 Details subject to change.To have your senior transportation added or changes to your listing, Call Sherii at (269) 979-1479 ext. 302 or
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