Adjusting to the caregiver role for an injured spouse

On Behalf of | Jul 18, 2019 | Workplace Injuries

Workplace injuries can turn a family’s life inside out, especially when a primary breadwinner can no longer do his or her job. The spouse who is not injured must adjust from the role of partner to become a caregiver, which sometimes creates added stress.

If a serious injury has incapacitated your partner, follow these tips to provide effective care while also preserving your own well-being.

Pay attention to your health

Caregiving can be physically demanding, especially if your spouse has limited mobility. See a doctor if you develop symptoms such as headaches, muscle aches, high blood pressure or changes in sleep or appetite. These issues can stem from stress as well as the added physical labor of taking care of another person.

Practice compartmentalization

The AARP recommends setting aside specific times of the day or week when you can just be a partner to your loved one, not a caregiver. Some families even hire a nurse to take care of physical support tasks so the injured person’s spouse can focus on providing emotional support.

Ask for help

No one can focus solely on another person’s needs 24 hours a day. Rely on other family members to ease some of the caregiving burdens, especially if they have been asking you how they can help with your situation. If your family is struggling financially, you may want to seek personal injury compensation through the legal system.

Learn relaxation techniques

When stress builds, health problems can result. An incapacitating injury is one of the most stressful events a family can experience. Take time to practice yoga or meditation, get regular exercise or treat yourself to a hot bath or a good book.

Avoid isolation

Even when your home situation is difficult and your time is limited, spend time with friends and family members when possible. Just a quick phone call or online chat can boost your spirits.

Make sure your spouse receives the appropriate medical care for the injury. Professional help is available for those who come to harm at work.