March 16, 2016

respite careAre you part of the growing population in St. Louis known as the “sandwich generation”? No, it’s not a fan club for pastrami on rye, but the buzz phrase to describe adults who are sandwiched between caring for an aging parent while simultaneously caring for children, along with all of the additional responsibilities of life: career, home, volunteer work, pets, etc.

As more and more adults find themselves juggling these multiple (and very demanding) roles, it’s important to be aware of the signs of stress that, if not addressed, could result in serious mental and physical health problems.

If you find yourself experiencing the following symptoms of emotional overload, it may be time to accept some much-needed respite care, rather than continuing to shoulder the burden alone:

  1. Anxiety: Feelings of concern or worry are common when providing care for an aging parent, particularly when faced with the unknown and situations that are out of our control.
  2. Guilt: “Am I doing enough? Is there more I should be doing? How can I think of myself when Mom and the kids need me?”
  3. Anger: Anger can quickly manifest from fear and anxiety, and can sometimes be misdirected onto a loved one – resulting in more feelings of guilt and anxiety…a vicious circle.
  4. Grief: As a loved one ages, a sense of loss for the person who once was can be powerful. And watching a loved one continue to decline only exacerbates the feelings.

It’s so important for family caregivers to know that this stage of life as a sandwich generation caregiver does not have to be – nor, should it be – a solo journey. Accepting help does not mean failure or ineptitude. Partnering with a trusted senior home care agency is one of the best ways to maintain a healthy life balance.

If you’re seeking a professional senior care agency in the St. Louis or St. Charles area, Continuum is here to help. We guarantee quality care with our five-person team approach, including a caregiver, supervisor, scheduler, nurse and social worker available to each and every client, at no additional cost. The result is a breath of relief for family members struggling under a burden of stress that no one should carry alone. Call us at 314-863-9912 to learn more or to schedule a free in-home assessment.