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When Caregiving Is A Full-Time Job

Caregiving for a loved one can be a full-time job. Studies show that 6 in 10 family caregivers already have a full-time or part-time job. Balancing work and caregiving can be a challenge and there usually comes a tipping point when placing a loved one in a full-time care facility is a better, more loving option. But how can a caregiver know when the time has come to consider a skilled nursing facility?

Stress is normal, resentment is not

Being a caregiver is stressful. But there are some telltale signs that caregiving is becoming too much of an emotional burden. Check in for feelings of anger, resentment, or anxiousness. Any of these emotions can be a sign that the time has come to put a loved one in long-term care.

Is caregiving overtaking the work you’re paid for?

Some people are able to balance caregiving with full-time work through flexing hours, working remotely, or taking time off. However, if work performance is suffering and stress is climbing, this could be a sign that more help is needed. If a loved one is unable to take medications without help or to keep up with physical care, that loved one may be better off in a skilled nursing facility.

Can you keep them from falling 24/7?

In an assisted living facility, caregivers are equipped 24/7 to help keep elderly loved ones safe and protected from falls. Being a family caregiver is extremely difficult when a loved one is not mobile. Some signs that the time has come for long-term care can include a loved one not being able to tidy up the home, not being able to get in and out of bed alone, or not being able to use transportation safely.

Can you be there for every meal?

Problems with nutrition can indicate that a loved one needs a higher level of care. If a loved one is refusing to eat or is unable to eat solid food, this may be more than a family caregiver can handle. Particularly when balancing a full-time job, being available for every mealtime may just not be an option.

Making the transition

When transitioning a loved one to a skilled nursing facility, emotions will run high. Many caregivers will feel guilt, sadness, or disappointment. Talk through these feelings with a trusted friend or therapist. Though the transition can be challenging, placing a loved one in long-term care is often the most loving, safest choice.