Caring for someone with a depressive or bipolar disorder can be exhausting. Avoiding isolation is key to self-care. Maintaining interests and contacts outside of caregiving helps maintain a healthy home and a healthy you.
We created a podcast on this topic to help caregivers avoid burnout.
Thanks to everyone’s generosity, we were able to offer support to 460 caregiver support groups nationwide. FFDA moderates online support groups for family and friends of people with depressive disorders. Family caregivers share their hardships, difficulties and struggles and help others with similar challenges. Our moderator keeps the discussion supportive and focused, and answers any questions left unreturned.
During the holiday season, caregivers are at greater risk than usual for this type of exhaustion. Here’s a few tips to keep in mind:
Set Limits: Even activities we love can be stressful when we try to squeeze in too much. Set your priorities on what’s important, what will bring you joy and what absolutely can’t be missed.
Eat Right: Eat a healthy diet including vegetables, fruits, and whole grain products.
Exercise: Many studies have shown that exercise alleviates depression! Swimming, running, yoga, bicycling or even a brisk walk will help to release mood-elevating endorphins in your body.
Sleep: On average, people need eight hours of sleep per night. Try to get enough rest. To tackle insomnia, keep a consistent bedtime routine, limit caffeine and stimulating activities or television before bed.
Get Out!: Studies show that people with many social connections are healthier.
Volunteer: Nothing gives spirits a temporary boost more than helping someone.