Caring for a person with Alzheimer’s disease or other dementia at home can be both demanding and rewarding. At-home caregivers of people with dementia—who tend to be women—report many strains on their physical and mental health, as well as good feelings about supporting their loved ones.
The demands of caring for a person with Alzheimer’s can take a toll. One study of female caregivers showed that those who cared for people with dementia had twice the rate of depression symptoms compared with caregivers of people without dementia.
Taking care of yourself is one of the most important things you can do as a caregiver. You can:
- Ask for help when you need it.
- Join a caregivers’ support group.
- Take breaks each day.
- Spend time with friends.
- Keep up with your hobbies and interests.
- Eat healthy foods.
- Get exercise as often as you can.
- See your doctor on a regular basis.
- Keep your health, legal, and financial information up-to-date.
Taking these actions can bring you some relief. It also may help keep you from getting ill or depressed.
For more self-care tips, see Caring for Yourself: Alzheimer’s Caregiving Tips.
Visit the Alzheimer’s Disease Education and Referral Center website for more information and resources, or call 1-800-438-4380.
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