November Observations

As the holiday season rapidly approaches and we reflect on the many things we are grateful for, the urgent sense to begin planning and coordinating soon takes over. True to previous years, the joy of the season is often coupled with stress and frustration. Although we can't slow the clock taking more time for preparation, we can give energy into our own selves- nurturing our ability to give to others.

2016's National Family Caregivers Month theme is "Take care to give care". This can be easier said then done, to give to ourselves first, however - it is necessary. Recent studies show that family members who care for loved ones are at a higher risk of stress and stress induced conditions. Let's face it - taking care of others is not easy.

The National Caregivers Association suggest the following 10 Tips for Caregiving:

  1. Seek support from other caregivers. You are not alone!

  2. Take care of your own health so that you can be strong enough to take care of your loved one.

  3. Accept offers of help and suggest specific things people can do to help you.

  4. Learn how to communicate effectively with doctors.

  5. Caregiving is hard work so take respite breaks often.

  6. Watch out for signs of depression and don't delay getting professional help when you need it.

  7. Be open to new technologies that can help you care for your loved one.

  8. Organize medical information so it's up to date and easy to find.

  9. Make sure legal documents are in order.

  10. Give yourself credit for doing the best you can in one of the toughest jobs there is!

November is also National Hospice and Palliative Care Month. During November we honor the millions of nurses, home care aides, family members, social workers, and therapists who make a remarkable difference for the patients and families they serve.. This years theme, "Know your options" is a reminder of the countless options that are available. Plan your care before is becomes an immediate need. With knowledge comes the power to have the best, most desirable care, at an affordable rate. For more information visit NHPCO, National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization at

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