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Family Caregiver Survival Tips

Caregiving may be one of the most important roles you will undertake in your lifetime. Typically it is not an easy role, nor is it one for which most of us are prepared. Like most people, you may have questions about how to cope with your care receiver’s illnesses or disability. If you have a job and are juggling several responsibilities or if your family member or friend needs a lot of assistance, you may need help with caregiving, too. Whether you are expecting to become a caregiver or have been thrust into the role overnight, it is useful to know where you can get information and help.

The enactment of the Older Americans Act Amendments of 2000 (Public Law 106-501) established an important new program, the National Family Caregiver Support Program (NFCSP). The program was developed by the Administration on Aging (AoA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). It was modeled in large part after successful LTC programs in states such as California, New Jersey, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania and after listening to the needs expressed by hundreds of family caregivers in discussions held across the country.

Caregiver Survival Tips

1. Plan ahead
2. Learn about available resources
3. Take one day at a time
4. Develop contingency plans
5. Accept help
6. Make YOUR health a priority
7. Get enough rest and eat properly
8. Make time for leisure
9. Be good to yourself!
10. Share your feelings with others

(from Dept. of Health and Human Services, Administration on Aging)