Take Care of Yourself

Studies consistently show that people who provide care to loved ones suffer from higher levels of depression than their non-caregiving peers. In fact, some studies show that as many as half of adult caregivers show signs of depression.

When you're faced with providing care for a loved one, do not set aside your own needs. You are the most important person in the process. If you allow yourself to "burn out", you can no longer care for your loved one and may find that it's hard to take care of yourself.

To avoid the high levels of stress associated with being a caregiver:

My first client was 89-years-old, and I ended up staying with her 24/7 until she passed away at the age of 92. I used to read the Bible to her, and we sang songs together because she used to be a choir director at her church. She wanted me to sing her favorite song – 'The Old Rugged Cross' – at her funeral. I did. I was with her when she took her last breath. It was such a sacred moment. I’ll never forget it. It just cemented this whole career for me and made me realize this was what I wanted to do.

Karen Stevens, 2009 RightCare Winner

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