Caring for an elder can be rewarding and personally enriching, but it is also stressful. Using the tips in the following list can help you relieve your stress and improve quality of life for both you and your elder.

  • Accept limitations — your own and your elder's.

  • Don't dwell on small annoyances.

  • Search for opportunities to laugh, such as watching TV sitcoms.

  • Eat nutritious meals and exercise every day.

  • Look for ways to save time and energy, such as shopping from catalogs.

  • Find out about your elder's medical conditions so that you know what to expect.

  • Use relaxation techniques like visualization, meditation, and listening to music.

  • Discover a new hobby or re-establish an old one.

  • Ask family and friends to relieve you of some of your time-consuming tasks.

  • Take advantage of professional respite care.

  • Join a support group.

  • Seek professional help if the stress seems overwhelming.