Taking care of a loved one with dementia, Alzheimer’s, or similar neurodegenerative disease is a full-time job. The time commitment is only the start of what makes providing care difficult to balance with other commitments. Assisting an ailing relation is also emotionally and physically taxing.

Respite care is a safe and reliable option for anyone seeking a temporary break from providing care. Respite care is designed for everyone’s benefit. Here are some of the top reasons to consider adding respite care to any treatment plan. To start, however, let’s address the basics of what respite care is.

What is Respite Care

Respite care is when a patient who requires dedicated care temporarily stays in an assisted living facility while the primary caregiver is not present. This way, the patient is able to get the treatment and assistance they need while the caregiver is busy. Respite care is a positive solution not only for the caregiver but for the patient as well.

Benefits for the Patient

While respite care is often billed as a tool in the care giver’s belt, it is also useful to the patient. Studies show that a change of scenery can be beneficial for patients with neurodegenerative diseases. Respite care offers a short-term change of routine for patients. This change in routine can help prevent or slow further deterioration if done consistently.

Respite care can also give both the patient and the caregiver a look into what long term, professional treatment would look like. It can be daunting and scary to consider permanent solutions like moving a loved one into assisted care, with respite care, however, both the patient and caregiver will have the opportunity to see what long term care would look like before committing.

Benefits for the Caregiver

Respite care offers the caregiver a chance to catch up on the daily tasks that might get lost in the shuffle of providing care. Respite care, in general, allows the caregiver the opportunity to attend to other obligations, commitments, and themselves without worrying about neglect or a lack of treatment for their loved one. Respite care can be an important solution for anyone debating balancing providing care and attending to others’ needs.

Regardless of what motivates someone to consider respite care, one of the benefits will be the same, the caregiver will be able to provide better care upon return. It is important to remember this as guilt is often unfairly brought into consideration when weighing whether or not to find another care option. In the end, however, finding a solution that gives the caregiver the opportunity to recharge and remove outside stressors from the list of concerns allows them to provide better care in the future.