9 Signs You Can Benefit From Respite Care
There’s a reason why babysitters exist: Parents and guardians need a break once in a while. Moreover, those who care for a child with a disability have an even more complex life, with more challenges, more demands, and even more reason to ask for a helping hand. Getting respite care isn’t just about providing extra care for a child. It’s about providing much needed relief for parents and guardians who may be overworked, overwhelmed, and stressed out. While you may think that it is your responsibility to care for your child 24-7, you owe it to yourself to take a break from those responsibilities, too — you deserve it!
If you’ve never sought respite care before, you may be asking yourself: Do I really need respite? More often than not, that answer is yes, and there are some telltale signs that parents and guardians may experience if they could benefit from respite. Here are a few of the most common signs that respite care is right for you:
Poor sleep habits: Whether you can’t sleep at night, or you’re tired all the time, constant care for your child can leave you with poor sleep habits. And unfortunately, poor sleep can lead to more problems for your health. Give yourself much needed rest and a more consistent sleep schedule with respite care.
Loss of interest: If you’ve lost interest in things that you normally enjoy, you may be overstressed and overworked. A loss of interest may come from decreased serotonin levels, a lack of energy, stress, and poor diet, all of which may be linked to caregiver stress. Respite care can help you to reclaim your zest for life and your passions.
Aches and pains: Whether you’re constantly standing, sitting, or bending over to care for your child, you could end up with any number of aches and pains. On top of that, poor sleep, poor diet, and lack of exercise can be harmful for your health. Aches and pains may be an indication that you need to take time to care for yourself.
Anger issues: Being angry may feel unnatural, but it can happen to the best of us. Pent up stress, bottled up emotions, and little time to care for oneself can lead to anger. If you noticed that you grow angry or act out of anger, respite care can help you to relieve tension. Recognize that you are doing good for yourself as well as for your child with respite care.
Irritability: Similarly, any caregiver can feel irritable when they don’t get a break. Give yourself “time off” to destress. You may find that you feel refreshed, happier, and less irritable.
Drinking or drug use: Drinking or drug use, including prescription drug abuse, may be an outlet for those who are experiencing caregiver stress. Respite care helps to improve your independence and mental health, and it may help to curb any urge to drink or use drugs.
Forgetfulness: Forgetfulness is commonly paired with exhaustion and stress. If you are overworked by caring for your child while also taking care of other day-to-day responsibilities, you may notice that you become more forgetful. Take note if you begin to forget appointments, tasks, or even meals throughout the day.
Depression: Constant care demands can sap energy, and may even make a caregiver feel inadequate. Depression is a common symptom of Caregiver Stress Syndrome, which is common among caregivers who take care of children with disabilities. Respite care can help to reverse or mitigate depression.
Illness: Illnesses can crop up in those with compromised immune systems, which can be caused by stress, as well as poor exercise and diet. All of these issues are common among caregivers who care for children with disabilities. Take note if you have colds and other illnesses more often than others or more often than you have in the past.
The Importance of Respite Care
Respite care doesn’t just provide additional support for your child. It provides parents and guardians with much needed time to recoup from a demanding life. Respite care offers parents and guardians time to focus on themselves, so they can improve their mental and physical health and wellbeing. If you’re experiencing any of the common signs that you need respite listed above, seek help from a respite care provider. Even a few hours of respite care per week can work wonders to help you destress, relax, and rest, so that you can continue to provide care for your child while caring for yourself.
Call Inland Respite
If you’re curious about respite care for your child with special needs or disabilities, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us to get started. Our caregivers proudly work throughout Southern California, and we have offices in Corona, Indio, and Brawley. We provide in-home respite care, companion care, and assistance with daily living needs and tasks. We look forward to working with you!