Osteoporosis Caregiver Tips – Help for Caregivers
Osteoporosis slows down the creation of new bones, which means that those living with the disease may not fully recover from a fracture or break if one occurs.
Caregivers providing aid to loved ones living with this medical condition may sometimes feel under stress because of the care that is required to appropriately assist an individual with bones that are more subject to breaks than the average person.
There is, however, support for aides underpinning family members living with osteoporosis.
What Can Caregivers Do?
The best thing that a caregiver can do for a loved one living with osteoporosis is to ensure that the person takes all prescribed medications. Providing a balanced diet that includes extra doses of calcium and Vitamin D also helps combat brittleness.
A balanced diet contributes to stronger bones for family members living with osteoporosis as well. Doctors who treat individuals with bone fragility suggest nutritional plans containing foods that reduce the possibility of flare-ups while also remaining in line with the patient's prescribed medications.
It is important that caregivers stick with the diet plan when preparing meals and encourage family members to do the same when home alone or out with family.
Caregivers of those living with osteoporosis should do everything within their power to ensure that their loved ones do not experience falls. Such is especially the case for individuals over the age of 65 when falls could threaten independence and even life.
Exploring various resources for caregivers is a good way for health care workers to stay informed about practical nursing methods that ensure patient safety.
Self-Help for Caregivers: When Burnout Strikes
Sometimes the responsibility of caring for family members living with osteoporosis can be overwhelming. Such is the reason why a condition known as caregiver burnout affects thousands of loved ones caring for disabled family members every year.
A person experiencing burnout is physically, mentally, and emotionally exhausted to the extent of exhibiting irregular characteristics.
Exhaustion often causes caregivers to take a negative approach when interacting with a loved one living with osteoporosis. Instead of presenting anticipation of things improving, the aide may start to make remarks that encourage doubt.
Lack of concern is another sign of caregiver burnout as workers initially stop paying attention to the afflicted person’s diet and exercise routine before progressing to more significant levels of uninterest.
It is important that friends and family of the caregiver recognize the signs of burnout, which include:
- Loss of interest in activities that were previously exciting
- Expressed feelings of hopelessness
- Changes in appetite and weight
- Irregular sleep patterns
- Heightened consumption of alcohol and sleeping pills
Any of the above signs should be addressed immediately to prevent caregivers from isolating themselves and traveling the dangerous path of depression.
Caregivers and Depression
No one symptom points to depression in caregivers. In fact, many signs of burnout are the same indications of depression.
In addition to having trouble sleeping and experiencing a loss of appetite, caregivers who are depressed may disregard personal hygiene. Those who develop a severe form of the condition may even become enthusiastic about their jobs and life in general right before committing suicide.
Solutions for Caregivers
It is because of the severity of depression and its subtle implications that loved ones of caregivers must remain on-guard. The first step to proactiveness is understanding why those providing aid osteoporosis patients suffer burnout.
Many loved ones want their family members to reach a climax of healthy living that is unattainable. It is not realistic for caregivers to expect patients who are living with osteoporosis to reach new levels in exercise every day since the condition presents diverse challenges.
Such unfeasible heights may lead the caregiver to believe that he or she is failing at his or her job. Feelings of inadequacy can quickly progress to depression without the intervention of friends or family members to affirm the caregiver for the positive impact that he or she is making in the ailing loved one’s life.
Sometimes instances of doubt require the carer to step away from the job to catch the latest movie or concert. Engaging in activities outside of caregiving is a good way to relieve tension. Venting frustrations to a close friend is another way to deal with challenges that sometimes come with monitoring loved ones living with osteoporosis.
Both of these solutions give the caregiver an out so that he does not feel the need to take out his frustrations on the ailing loved one. Those living with osteoporosis also benefit from their assistants engaging in self-care because happy aides present more optimistic attitudes and positive vibes throughout the day.
Osteoporosis affects more than three million individuals worldwide. Although the disease can be debilitating, it is possible to live a fulfilling life while suffering from bone fragility.
Understanding the causes and effects of osteoporosis while engaging in a bit of self-care now and then is the solution for caregivers who support loved ones living with this condition.