November 29, 2021
What is respite care?
Quite simply, respite is about a temporary care solution to give an unpaid carer a break. It can be for as little as a few hours to several weeks.
Why would we need Respite Care?
If you’re an unpaid carer, it can be both tiring and a huge commitment, especially if your loved one needs 24/7 support. We all want the best for those we love, but that includes ensuring that we also get a break. If you make yourself ill, then you won’t be able to help them. Likewise, there are times when you might need to go away for a variety of reasons, from your own health appointments to family visits and a holiday.
It really is important that as an unpaid carer you don’t feel guilty about seeking respite care for your loved one. Quite apart from your physical health, there is also your mental health to consider.
If you don’t allow yourself to take a break, then that can snowball into a crisis for you, which will have a far more reaching impact on your loved one. Caregivers can feel frustrated by their situation, and if you don’t allow yourself a break, even if it’s to visit friends for a few hours a week, or to go on a week’s holiday, then the frustration can overwhelm you. This could severely impact your behaviour towards your loved one as you battle with guilt and frustration.
But my loved one only wants me to look after them?
It’s natural for your loved one to want you to be their carer. When somebody feels vulnerable or confused, they will turn to those they know and love for support. However, you have to separate the emotions from the practical considerations. Easier said than done we know. Here are some suggestions:
What kind of respite care is available?
This is going to depend on your loved one’s needs as well as the length of time required, but could be as simple as finding a day care centre for your loved one to visit, or involve a professional carer coming into your home, or a stay at a care home or nursing home. If your loved one is on end-of-life care, then hospice might be more appropriate.
How do I get advice on our options?
Speak to one of LV’s care professionals. They can assess your loved one’s needs and help you make the decision on which is the most appropriate option. We offer both in-home and care/nursing home respite care. https://lv.care/contact/