8 Benefits of Respite and Why You Should Get It Now!

8 Benefits of Respite and Why You Should Get It Now!

What Are the Benefits of Respite?

We all know the benefits of exercise and a good diet. They make us healthier, stronger, and better focused. Yet, many of us don’t value taking time away from our regular routines, especially when we feel overwhelmed by the responsibilities of caring for someone who is unwell. Time away, while knowing that your loved one is in good hands and being properly cared for, is important for your own health and peace of mind, much like exercise and a good diet. Using respite services can support and strengthen your ability to be a caregiver and has many benefits for both the caregiver and recipient of care alike.

Benefits of Respite for the Caregiver: 

1) Renewal and Happiness

Respite breaks allow caregivers to take that breather, rest, relax, and then return to their roles far more effectively. Find an hour per week to do something you personally enjoy and brings you a different kind of happiness. As a caregiver, you must remember that you have the right to enjoy life. You have no reason to feel guilty.

2) Engagement

As the North American population ages, social isolation is becoming a bigger problem for caregivers. It’s important to take time to engage with your friends and family by going out for lunch or doing whatever allows you to interact with people without fulfilling a caregiving duty.

3) Relaxation

Taking a walk, strolling leisurely through a park, visiting a museum or doing whatever brings joy can calm you, decrease your heart rate and improve your mood. You seldom get such opportunities when you are a caregiver, yet they contribute immensely to your overall health and well-being!

4) Energy

To be effective in your busy life, you must take time to re-energize. Despite your best intentions, you can’t run on empty! Simply getting some time to take a nap or to have a good night of sleep can provide you with the energy you need to continue being a caregiver.

5) Space and Perspective

Getting away from your caregiving situation for even just a few hours can help you get the space you need to see more clearly and keep things in proper perspective. You might even think of better ways of doing things and other resources you can tap into.

Benefits to the Recipient of Care:

6) Socialization

Respite can provide your loved one with the opportunity to interact with others having similar experiences or just interact with someone different.

7) Participation in Activities

Respite care services often organize recreational and life skills activities. Some centers also organize cognitive games to help improve or stabilize the cognitive skills of older adults.

8) Reduction of Stress Levels

The recipient of care may become concerned about the stress they are causing you, which in turn causes them to be stressed. When they see that they can help you feel more relaxed, it can positively affect them and reduce their anxiety and guilt.

Moreover, research shows clear and proven benefits to respite. One study demonstrated that caregivers who used adult day care services for their relatives with dementia had significantly lower levels of caregiver stress, anger, and depression. Another study also found that respite/day care interventions effectively reduced caregiver depression and increased well-being.

A recent study has also identified that approximately 60% of the family caregivers surveyed reported “fair or poor” health, compared with only 33% of non-caregivers.

Caregiving is rewarding, but it can also easily become overwhelming. Taking care of yourself makes you a better caregiver in the long run.

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Eugeria is the reference and one-stop shop for Alzheimer's and cognitive impairments.

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