National Family Caregivers Month: How to balance caretaker responsibilities with a career
Whether you’re a wife, mother or friend, being a caregiver comes with a tough routine. Between scheduling appointments, managing medications or getting dinner into the oven, you’re always striving to make each day better and brighter for those who count on you.
Laser Spine Institute knows caring for someone else — especially a person with neck or back pain — can seem overwhelming at times. Our patient’s Care Partners play a vital role in helping them get their lives back during their journey to relief. So how can you balance your Care Partner duties with your full-time career and other responsibilities?
We’ve provided a few simple tips to help make it a little more manageable.
Know when to ask for help
Your day is planned by the minute. Sometimes the schedule flows smoothly; sometimes everything falls apart — and you shouldn’t feel guilty about that. Consider tweaking parts of your caregiving routine that are more complex than others. Reach out to other family members for help, or try connecting with online support groups specific to your loved one’s condition. Your employer can also be a resource for benefits like flextime, job-sharing, telecommuting and referral services.
Consider a career change
Your job can constantly affect the way you care for someone who needs your support, especially if symptoms continue to worsen. Try exploring a career path that allows caregivers to work from home. Many technical support specialists, medical transcriptionists and call center representatives make a sustainable living online. Using online job boards, try typing the words “work from home” in the advanced search settings. Fortunately, there are many opportunities to work from home in this digital age.
Stay up-to-date on caregiver tech
A smartphone app may not be a set of helping hands, but it can help streamline your routine. With the CarePartners Mobile app, you can track and coordinate your to-do list. Share the list with family members to see who is doing what, assign new tasks and receive reminders. While you’re away, your loved one can use the WebMD Pain Coach™ app to track their chronic neck or back pain, nerve pain and other conditions. Patients can also use the app to set personal goals during their journey to pain relief.
The role of a caregiver is one of the most selfless gifts you can give to someone in need. At Laser Spine Institute, we wouldn’t be able to provide quality patient-centered care without the daily commitment of our Care Partners. If it ever feels like your caregiving routine is getting out of hand, just remember some of these helpful alternatives — and that you’re not alone.