Daily Dementia Dose: You cannot give what you do not have

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Daily Dementia Dose: You cannot give what you do not have

I think last Monday or Tuesday, I wasn’t able to go live because I was just so tired.

I was seeing patients and doing a lot of paperwork.

I was just so tired and in reality, I cannot give what I do not have.

Same thing with money, I cannot give money to my kids if I do not have enough money myself.

I cannot give love to somebody if I cannot love myself. And I cannot give care to somebody if I don’t take care of myself.

The past few days, I had to take care of myself, I had to go back to my normal exercise routine, and eat properly.

It’s the same thing with caregiving, you cannot give what you cannot have.

You cannot give care to your loved one if you cannot take care of yourself.

Here are some tips that you can do to take care of yourself as a caregiver.

First, you have to have rest. You need to take a rest.

Doctors and nurses have rest when they get out of their shifts. It’s the same thing with caregiving.

I know some of you take care of your families 24/7, but you need time to rest.

Find at least a respite care, or an adult day care that you can take your loved one to so you can rest.

Second is that you need to give yourself something. Some reward.

Eat out, or buy something for yourself, or go to a salon.

The third thing you need to do is exercise.

Exercising releases certain hormones. I try my best to exercise and take a walk.

It doesn’t have to be a “perfect” exercise. You don’t have to go to the gym. You can just go out and walk and just enjoy the sunshine. Enjoy the weather and enjoy nature.

When you’re exercising, you’re releasing certain hormones, like endorphins and stuff like that and it gives you some sort of a boost which helps improve your health, your mood and your body.

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Daily Dementia Dose: Have you ever felt you just want to shout as a caregiver?

About the author 

Dr Michael Chua PT, DPT

Dr Michael Chua is a physical therapist practising in Home Health, Skilled Nursing Facilities and Acute Care Hospital. His clinical interest involves pain management, geriatrics and dementia management. He enjoys treating patients and bringing out the best in them using positive treatment approaches, his dynamic work setting in a rural area provides an opportunity to treat a wide range from geriatrics to orthopaedics.

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