Emotional Health for 40- 60
Emotional Health Solutions for 40-60
Everyone eats a stress sandwich from time to time.
Raising a family, managing careers, and taking care of your aging parents give us all the stress we can handle. Imagine caring for someone with a disability too.
Many of us in the 40-60 range are also now providing caregiving services to our parents. I was acutely aware of these stresses when caring for my mother who had Alzheimer’s Disease. The emotional toll of being there for our loved ones while being pulled away for other life responsibilities is very demanding, to say the least.
The stress of being a caregiver can cause a real deterioration of one’s health and can be a precursor to depressive symptoms.
Caregivers suffer from more depression and anxiety than their non-caregiving relatives
Especially when the ill family member has a terminal condition. Guilt is an ever-present issue that caregivers face and stem from not always being available to help out and the need to make serious decisions like when placing your loved one in a care facility.
Signs of caregiver stress include too much or too little eating, anxiousness, sleep loss, alcohol abuse, anger, and apathy to name a few.
It is extremely important to have coping mechanisms like meditation, prayer, exercise, social outlets, and the use of outside help when available. Staying in touch with your doctor is crucial to not letting your own health slip away.
You can address more serious levels of stress if you have a tool to score the level of stress you’ve experienced. Use this popular stress scale calculator to see how much stress you’ve had and its potential impact on your health. High levels of stress are correlated with more illness. If you’re scoring greater than a 150 then don’t be afraid to consult with a counselor or therapist to address issues that may affect your health, happiness, and your productivity.