For many, the challenges of caring for an elderly, chronically ill, or disabled family member are simply a part of daily life. Caregiving, though, is a demanding job and no one is equipped to do it alone. Respite care provides short-term breaks that can relieve stress, restore energy, and promote balance in your life. Even if working with family members is difficult, there are many other respite care options available to support you and your loved one. Seeking support and maintaining your own health are key to managing your role as a caregiver. Using respite care before you become exhausted, isolated, or overwhelmed is ideal, but just anticipating regular relief can become a lifesaver. Respite care can take many forms, but boils down to two basic ideas: sharing the responsibility for caregiving and getting support for yourself. Finding the right balance requires persistence, patience, and preparation. Planning your relief Planning starts with analyzing needs, both yours and your loved one’s. Assessing your needs for the type, skills, frequency, and location of respite services is critical to ensure you receive appropriate respite. As a caregiver, what type of support do you need most? Or is it some regular free time? Or maybe help with transportation? Keep track of your daily activities and then make a list of the areas and times when you most need help. Identifying your loved one’s requirements, abilities, and preferences will also help you find the right match. Are social activities primary? Do they require assistance with walking, eating medications? Do they need mental stimulation? Or exercise? Answering these questions will help you determine which respite options to pursue. Homemaker services Support meal preparation, shopping, and housekeeping. Services may last from a few hours to overnight, and may be arranged by calling us at 919-665-6567. This popular respite choice enables the patient to remain in his or her own home, and can be invaluable for caregivers as well.