Are You Part of the Sandwich Generation?

Caregiver Bethesda, MD: Sandwich Generation
Caregiver Bethesda, MD: Sandwich Generation

Perhaps you’ve heard the term “sandwich generation,” and have wondered if it pertains to you. The sandwich generation refers to caregivers who are sandwiched between caring for at least one aging parent who is 65 or older and also providing care of their children, whether they are still in the home or whether they are young adults, still needing financial and emotional support from the caregiver. Usually those in the sandwich generation are in their 40s and 50s, and no surprise, they’re often overwhelmed, stressed out, and exhausted. Sound familiar? Perhaps it’s you! 

As a caregiver of an aging parent, you most likely try to balance your time between your parent(s), your child(ren), your spouse, your job, your home, and on good days, yourself.  You’re basically sandwiched between all of your responsibilities, and it can make it hard to breathe and cause you to feel as if you barely get enough chance to come up for air before the next crisis arises and you have to dive back in to help those you love.  

As the caregiver wedged within all these responsibilities, there are steps you can take to provide yourself a little bit of relief so that you might find the time to do some self-care in addition to assisting everyone else in your life. As they routinely show you on airplanes, you must put on your own airbag before you’ll be able to help others with theirs. 

  1. Ask for help. Being a caregiver is the time to give away your pride of being able to do it all, and make the point to ask as many people as possible for help. If you have an adult child who is back living at home, ask that child to help with transporting your parent to and from appointments or have your adult (or even older teen) child take care of your parent’s yardwork or laundry.  
  1. Hire some help. When friends and family aren’t enough support, investigate agencies that provide home care assistance to help your parent with tasks such as daily care or meal prep. If you don’t have family members who can help with yardwork, perhaps your parent has a neighbor who can be hired to shovel snow or drag the garbage can out to the curb each week. A preteen who is too young for a “real” job might appreciate the opportunity to make a little money and you won’t have to do it yourself every week.  
  1. Buy some help. There are lots of assistive devices out there that you can purchase to help your parent continue to live independently. Perhaps it’s something like a medical alert system so that you’ll be immediately notified (or emergency workers will be) if your parent falls or suffers from a heart attack. Or maybe it’s something more simple like a can opener to help your parent open cans when her arthritis is too painful.  
  1. Help yourself. Set up boundaries for all of those you care for in order to protect yourself. Clearly communicating to your family, your workplace, and even yourself about what you can and cannot do is essential to your self-care.  

The primary mission of a caregiver is to keep everyone happy, healthy, and safe. If you learn to ask for help early on the journey, it’ll ensure you get the help you need when you need it.   

If you or an aging loved-one is considering a Caregiver in Bethesda, MD please contact the caring staff at Just Divine Home Care Agency today at (301) 219-1585. 

Skin Care for Seniors: The Best Techniques and Tips

Home Care in Olney, MD: Seniors and Skin Issues
Home Care in Olney, MD: Seniors and Skin Issues

Aging affects different parts of the body, and skin is one of them. Collagen supplies aren’t as plentiful, and cells don’t regenerate and repair as quickly. These problems with aging can lead to dry, itchy skin. 
 
There are other issues, too. After years in the sun, the risk of skin cancer increases. Sunspots appear. Other non-cancerous growths may appear. All of it can be concerning. It’s time to look at your mom and dad’s skincare habits and take steps to improve them. 
 
Dry Skin Thoroughly After a Shower 
 
One way to avoid skin issues is by making sure it is dried thoroughly after a shower. Don’t leave moisture in any creases. It increases the risk of fungal infections in folds or between the toes. 
 
Your parents could air dry if they struggle to dry some of their creases and lower areas like the toes. If they’re not comfortable with that, get them each a terry robe and have them wear that for a while before they get dressed. The goal is not to get dressed until their skin is dry. 
 
Be Liberal With Moisturizer 
 
Once their skin is dry, they want to apply a moisturizer. Ideally, they want one that is unscented and approved by dermatologists. Cerave products are one option. 
 
Eat a Healthy Diet 
 
Eat foods that are high in antioxidants to help the skin stay healthier. Berries, leafy greens, and citrus fruits are all excellent choices. They also want to keep hydrated. Have them aim for two or three liters of water each day. 
 
Always Use Sunscreen 
 
When they’re outside, your parents should apply sunscreen that’s 30 SPF or higher. It has to be a broad-spectrum sunscreen that protects against UVA and UVB rays. Every two hours or after getting wet, they need to reapply it. 
 
Make sure they know to apply the sunscreen to any exposed skin. This includes the back of the arms, the armpits, the back of the knees, the eyelids, and the ears. 
 
Ask for a Referral to a Dermatologist 
 
When they’re at the doctor’s office, they should ask for a referral to have their skin checked by a dermatologist. If they have any moles, it’s important to have an expert look them over. The appointment won’t take long. 
 
At the dermatologist’s office, they’ll put on a hospital gown and lay or stand. The doctor will go over their skin and use the scope to make sure moles are not cancerous. 
 
As soon as you find your parents having a more challenging time with personal care and showering, it’s time to call a home care expert. They can have caregivers assisting them where help is needed and letting them do everything else. Home care supports your dad and mom’s wish to live independently in their home. Call now. 

If you or an aging loved-one is considering home care in Olney, MD please contact the caring staff at Just Divine Home Care Agency today at (301) 219-1585.