by francy Dickinson www.seniorcarewithspirit.com
Dear Francy: This is my second round of a nasty bug and I’m worried about mother, I do not want her getting sick. But I also want to rest to get well myself…ideas?
Well I know that you understand the importance of keeping everything clean and we will go over that, but you also need to understand the real key – is YOU. You are the caregiver without you your mother is on her own. So, you have to make a real effort to rest and get your immune system strong. I will list some ideas and you take what you like and the rest you may already know.
- Use the bleach clean wipes for counter tops on everything that is shared or public area. Light switches, phones, cell phones, the intercom buttons, the handles on doors, the handles on your mother’s walker, the handles on hard surface chair arms, the faucets, the remote controls, and the small machines like the breathing machine and diabetic tester. Those are surfaces that need to stay clean.
- Use your gloves everytime you go into her room, and then clean your hands after you remove the gloves
- Have your immune basket ready with things that give you a boost. EmergenC, AirBorne and Vitimine C (2,000 units per day when you are unwell or feeling like something is coming on) – Turmeric is the latest supplement that is finding a big following; you take two pills per day, every day to boost your immune sytem. The pills are 500mg and two means 1,000 mg per day normally, if you are unwell or are facing problems double that for a while. Look on Google and review what the above supplements do and if you feel comfortable using them. Your mother has to check to see if she has a problem with them bothering her meds. You can take the list to the drug store and show the pharistist and they will let you know if there might be a problem.
- Adult Day Care Centers. Each community has a few of these great centers that take older people with problems in and keep them busy for a few hours. Some are free- some charge…but what it will do is give you a break to take a long nap.
- If you need to really just tuck in bed, then call a sibling and ask them to come over or take your mom for a short stay. Or call a neighbor and ask if they would make your mother’s lunch or dinner so you do not have to do it all. Let your mom know to hang low and not to do a lot of walking around if she is unsteady. You can even bring her commode into her sitting room, so she has a shorter distance to move to the toilet.
- This is when frozen dinners really help. I ask everyone to make more than just the dinner for the family, if you add one more serving and freeze it…then those nights you are tired or unwell you can just pull out the frozen food you have personally prepared and know the meal is good and tasty.
- This is when you need to put the pills for your mother in a small dish and sit it next to her chair and tell her you will call her when it’s time to take them, you can cover it with a napkin and she will not worry over it all day. Give her the cell phone to have next to her all day and you just call her using your home line. I would check in every 20-40 minutes depending on how she is with time.
- Make sure you breath well. Take nice big deep breathes each time you get up to go to the bathroom. The rule for water intake is that a glass of water is drank each time you go to the bathroom. That will flush out the bad stuff.
- Stay quiet, do not do a lot of talking, that takes energy-so keep quiet. Keep your feet up if you are sitting down and always use a throw to keep a chill off of you while you are resting.
- Let the family know you are feeling unwell. It may not occur to you that you could faint, or have a heart problem or infection that might escalate and you would be unable to care for your mother and need care yourself. So, check in with a friend or family member during your illness and let them know your progress.
I hope this helps you and you will go and visit my website and sign up for my newsletter www.seniorcarewithspirit.com Youwill find lots of other information there for your care giving ideas.
Thanks for all you do for your mother, you are kind to care for her.