You have been taking care of your aging mother for some time. Maybe it’s been a few weeks, months, or even years. As a family caregiver, you’ve noticed how much stress is affecting you and having been diagnosed with arthritis yourself, there are days when you simply don’t feel like going over there because of the pain, swelling, and struggle you go through just to perform some of the basic tasks of your own daily life.
If you’re not quite sure whether arthritis is affecting you directly as a caregiver for your elderly mother, here are three signs you might want to pay closer attention to.
Sign #1: The pain is leaving you frustrated.
When you get frustrated because of the pain you feel in your hands or other joints that are directly impacted by arthritis, it might seem to be something you just have to “deal with,” but it could be affecting you in many other ways.
That frustration can translate into relationship struggles between you and your mother. She might say something that you suddenly snap at. It causes an argument. That forces you to focus more on the pain you’re already feeling. That can exacerbate the frustration and be a troubling cycle you can’t seem to escape.
Sign #2: You’re giving up things you enjoy.
Whether it’s knitting, playing card games with friends, tending to a garden, exercising at the gym, or something else, when you feel the direct impact of pain and discomfort caused by arthritis and it is being exacerbated by your work as a family caregiver, you are more likely to give up things that you enjoy, things that are important to you, all in the hopes of devoting the right type of time and energy to your mother.
You may also give up these things because you never seem to have time to rest and the pain and inflammation is constant.
Sign #3: You can’t exercise.
When you can’t exercise or you have difficulty sleeping because of the pain you feel, that is going to be frustrating. Without proper exercise, a good, healthy diet, and some time to yourself, the arthritis is most likely only going to get worse.
What can you do?
One thing you can do in this type of situation is realize the value in hiring an experienced home care aide. You can hire somebody for just a couple of hours a day a few days a week to start. That may help you avoid inflammation and over exerting your body, and that can help temper the symptoms of arthritis and keep your relationship with your mother positive.
If you or an aging loved one are considering help for family caregivers in Omaha, NE, please contact the caring staff at Seniors Helping Seniors® Greater Omaha at (402) 215-0308 today.
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