What Is Respite Care?
Respite care is a situation in which someone who is the primary caregiver to
another person is temporarily relieved of his/her care giving duties by another
caregiver or any of the other available option. It is an arrangement that allows a
primary caregiver the ability to take a break from his duties of being responsible
for a patient so he can take care of himself.
Who Can Provide Respite care?
There are various forms respite care can take. They include a primary caregiver
being replaced by a friend, family member, a skilled caregiver or the patient
temporarily spending time in a nursing facility (or adult day care). There is no
single solution that fits everyone.
The primary focus for choosing a form of respite care is the needs of the patient.
Many people opt for family member or friends. This is usually the most basic
form. The problem with this option is that they are usually untrained to give care.
As a result there are lots of problems that could arise from this arrangement. A
professional Caregiver, on the other hand, is trained and will know how to handle
whatever problem or situation may arise.
Why Is Respite Care A Reliable Option?
The most important reason why respite care is a viable option for any caregiver is
that it enables the primary caregiver rest and refresh. It helps the primary
caregiver avoid burn out – a very common problem when caring for a loved one.
When caring for a loved one, emotions are always involved. This is not a bad
thing. How can you really care for someone if you cannot be affectionate about
them? You really cannot.
The problem usually arises when loved ones do not know how to be professional
about caring with affection. They sometimes let their emotions run them into
exhaustion. Professional caregivers are trained to be affectionate while being
professional and caring for a client at the same time. The result of the approach
family members take is usually burnout.
Until the primary caregiver gets some time of rest and refreshing, they usually
cannot be effective at caring for a loved one. This is another reason for respite
care: To be able to fully and effectively care for the one you love. If not carried
out, primary caregivers will keep watching themselves fail at minor tasks and not
be able to do anything about it. This stirs up several emotions including guilt on
the part of the primary caregiver and sometimes resentment on the part of the
loved one. The love one may begin to feel the caregiver is not carrying out her
duties effectively because they no longer care deeply.