November is National Family Caregivers Month. Each year, this month is set aside as the time to celebrate those who contribute their time to support a loved one’s health or help manage a loved one’s disability. Today, there are more than 44 million Americans who care for family, friends, and neighbors. This is the month to celebrate them.
This Year’s Theme
In 2017, the theme for National Family Caregivers Month is “Caregiving Around the Clock”. Since caregiving is often a round the clock, 24/7 job, the Family Caregiver Alliance (FCA) thought the theme should reflect that.
We all know that caring for those with special needs can be a non-stop journey; it can often take precedence over your own family or your own needs. How do you, how do all caregivers, manage these challenges?
A Caregiver’s Day
Most caregivers are working mothers, with children in school. If this is you, you typically have to get your children ready for school, while making sure your loved ones are taken care off, before getting yourself ready for work.
If you are a caregiver, as much as 70% of your time is dedicated to managing your loved one’s medications. You have to make sure your loved one has the right medications and takes them at the right times throughout the day.
Since 60% of all caregivers also work at least part-time, you may find yourself cutting back your hours at work, or taking time off to help care for your loved one.
At night, you need to make sure your loved one eats properly, and that you do, too, to keep your strength up and stay healthy. It’s important to make time for yourself every day, even if it’s just a few minutes later at night. Take some time to breathe and recharge your batteries so you can give your all the next day.
And that’s a day in the life of a caregiver; the FCA knows life isn’t always easy, which is why they’ve dedicated this time to you.
FCA’s 40th Anniversary
This year is the Family Caregiver Alliance’s 40th anniversary. It is working to strengthen advocacy for caregivers. They provide tools, educational programs, and services which help family caregivers. If you are a family caregiver, be sure to head to their website and check out their resources.