Quad Cities, IL/IA

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Caring for Yourself While Caring for a Loved One


Submitted by Heartland Health Care Center – Moline

Caring for a chronically ill loved one can be emotionally and physically draining. Those charged with the in-home care of an ill or elderly family member may forget to care for themselves, concentrating mainly on their loved one. In turn, the caregiver’s health may begin to suffer.

According to the National Family Caregivers Association, more than 50 million people have acted as caregivers at some time over the past year. Recognizing signs and symptoms of poor health is the first step in keeping healthy while caring for a loved one. Signs of caregiver stress may include the following:

  • Disturbed sleep
  • Depression
  • Lack of energy
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Change in weight
  • Increased irritability
  • Feelings of hopelessness
  • Physical exhaustion or injury from lifting, dressing, or bathing

Successful intervention to prevent mounting stress often relies on the ability of the caregiver to “take a break” through friends and family support or through a respite care program. Making the time to take care for oneself is important to good health:

  • Exercise — take a walk or do some stretching
  • Get some fresh air
  • Make sure you are eating regular and well-balanced meals
  • Try to maintain good sleeping habits
  • Keep in touch with others
  • Ask for help

Heartland Health Care Center-Moline offers respite services, care tips, home safety tips, advice on selecting a healthcare agency, and counseling support for those who may need a helping hand or advice. Our respite and vacation programs can help caregivers take the necessary time to reenergize. For more information about Heartland’s programs and support services, please call Jodi Mines, Admissions Director today at 309-764-6744.

Heartland Health Care Center, located at 833 16th Ave., Moline, is part of the HCR ManorCare family. The HCR ManorCare health care family comprises centers that are leading providers of short-term post-acute services and long-term care. With 60,000 caregivers nationwide, the HCR ManorCare centers are preeminent care providers in their communities. Quality care for patients and residents is provided through a network of more than 500 skilled nursing and rehabilitation centers, assisted living facilities, outpatient rehabilitation clinics, and hospice and home healthcare agencies. These locations operate primarily under the respected Heartland, ManorCare Health Services and Arden Courts names.