Nancy L. Flaherty, MS, CDP
Helping Family Caregivers Deal With Their Challenges
Let's face it: Being a family caregiver can be difficult. Challenges may include balancing work and family life with caring for a loved one, feeling isolated, navigating senior care and medical systems, caring for a loved one who is not the same person as before their disease, and more. You don't have to navigate this alone. Flaherty Senior Consulting can help with:
Consultation with family caregivers.
Consultations with individuals by phone or in-person concerning placement options.
Facilitation of caregiver groups (supportive and educational).
Coordination between caregivers and providers.
General education, information, and referrals related to resources for senior care, including assistance with placement.
Continued supportive consultation as needed for caregiver families.
Monthly Solutions groups with other caregivers.
COVID-19 Update: In-person meetings and workshops are not currently being held. Teleconference and FaceTime meetings are available. Please contact us if you are interested in setting up a teleconsult or if you want us to notify you when workshops can safely be held again.
Caregiving during the Holidays
Caring for a loved one is hard, and the challenges are amplified during the pandemic and the holiday season.
Caregivers may not be comfortable bringing new persons into their home during the pandemic. They can’t visit a loved one in person in a facility, or their visits may be limited. The holidays bring extra stress as families adjust to the reality that celebrations may be different this year.
“The most important thing to know is that you aren’t alone,” says Nancy Flaherty, MS, CDP, president of Flaherty Senior Consulting. She is available to help navigate these unusual times.
Caregivers should focus on keeping their loved ones safe, while also paying attention to their own well-being:
Maintain a calm environment. One of the most important things a caregiver can do is to remain calm. The Alzheimer’s Foundation advises caregivers not to raise the alarm about the virus to the person they care for.
Have a back-up plan. This is especially important if the loved one lives far away. Is there a trusted person available who could help if needed? Plan for sheltering in place by having activities like puzzles, photo albums, music, movies and small tasks available.
Take care of the caregiver. Caregivers should take breaks from the news; take care of their bodies by eating healthy, exercising and getting enough sleep; take time to unwind by doing activities they enjoy; and connect with others.
A caregiver herself, Flaherty knows firsthand the challenges COVID-19 presents, both personally and professionally. While Flaherty Senior Consulting’s normal workshops and Solutions groups for caregivers are not meeting because of the pandemic, she is available to help in other creative ways. This includes phone calls and Zoom or Facetime meetings, which are a great way to involve multiple family members.
Now, more than ever, it’s important to stay connected and to reach out to someone who can provide insight into stress, provide practical tips for navigating challenges, or just offer a listening heart, Flaherty says. Flaherty Senior Consulting offers help with care plans, advice on caregiver challenges, answers to questions about dementia, tips to address behavior issues, guidance on long-term and day care placement options and more.
For more information, call 402-312-9324 or email Nancy.