respite care

Did you know there are nearly six million seniors found in Canada? Many of these individuals require long-term care either by their family members or professional healthcare staff. Unfortunately, the responsibilities of senior caregivers can often be overwhelming on a day-to-day basis. That’s why these individuals are entitled to breaks every now and then. But who looks after the seniors when these caregivers take leave? That’s where respite care comes into the picture.

If you want to learn more about respite care, you’re in the right place.

In this guide, we’ll give you a quick run-down on how things work in Canada. Let’s get started!

What Is Respite Care?

People in long-term care positions for seniors are essential workers. If they take one or two days off, the individual might not get the food, medication, or care that they need.

Unfortunately, this essential role can have an all-consuming effect on the caregiver’s life. As a priority in this person’s life, it can feel like you can’t take a day off.

On top of that, there’s the strain of the job itself. Long-term caregiving can be mentally and physically draining. If the senior you’re looking after is a family member, it can also be incredibly emotionally draining.

That’s where respite care comes into the picture. Respite care gives caregivers the ability to sustain their care. It does this by giving them a much-needed break from their role as caregivers.

During this short respite, another professional will look after the senior that requires care. Most of the time, the service can include things like:

Sometimes this break can be for a few hours. Other times it can be for days or even weeks. Depending on where you get to get this type of care, it can usually be customized to fit your needs.

That way, you or your caregiver gets the rest and relaxation they deserve while the senior still gets the care that they need.

Why Is Respite Care Important?

Caregiver burnout is a very real problem in Canada. When someone else becomes a priority in a caregiver’s life, it can often cause them to neglect their own health and well-being.

Unfortunately, this is a serious problem in Canada. One report found that the majority of caregivers of people with dementia either underuse respite care services or don’t use them at all.

Respite care is important for caregivers because it gives them so much needed time to refresh and de-stress. If caregivers don’t take this time, they can often bring negative emotions and feelings into their caregiving.

At best, this can result in a decline in service, and at worst, it can end in elder abuse. Respite care allows people to return to their caregiving role, recharged and ready to help.

This change in perspective can work wonders on the overall quality of care. And it helps reduce the number of caregivers that burn out due to stress or exhaustion.

Signs a Caregiver Might Require Respite Care Services

Knowing when to switch to respite care can be difficult for a caregiver. Because of this, it’s important to look at potential warning signs that you or your caregiver require a break.

First, if you’re not sleeping well, either from being on call or due to stress. You should also take a break if you find caregiving is interfering with your social life or your exercise routine.

Next, look for respite care if financial stress from caregiving is causing you to miss work. Lastly, you should consider these services if you’re experiencing a mental health crisis.

Depression is most common here. But it can also include anxiety, anger, and resentment.

Also, keep in mind that you don’t need to wait for the warning signs to get respite care. If you think you need a holiday, don’t be afraid to take one.

How Is Respite Care Different From Short-Term Care?

Respite care is a form of short-term care that’s given to seniors when their regular caregivers are unavailable. However, it differs from the common definition of short-term care.

Typically, this type of care occurs after someone is injured or recovering from surgery. So, while both of these types of care take place in short periods of time, they are different from each other.

How to Find Respite Care in Canada

Respite care is a transferable service in Canada. That means it can be used to fit the needs of the senior individual. Senior care can be provided at home, at a long-term care facility, or in a retirement living community.

So, how do you find respite care? The key is to contact the local community care offices in your area. From there, you can discuss the best options for the individual that needs care.

Keep in mind that eligibility for respite care can vary from area to area. In addition to this, in some cases, you will also need a referral.

The key is to pick a site that understands the demands and diversity of caregiving. For example, here at Retirement Concepts, we offer a variety of different respite care options, including:

This diverse range of assisted living options ensures that senior gets the care that they require, whether it’s a little or a lot.

Need Respite Care? Contact Retirement Concepts

We hope this article helped you learn more about respite care for seniors and caregivers. As you can see, respite care is a vital part of ensuring the effectiveness of long-term care.

Unfortunately, finding the right respite care in communities like Alberta, British Columbia, and Quebec can be a challenge. So, save yourself time and hassle by contacting Retirement Concepts.

For nearly four decades, we’ve been providing Canadian seniors with the care they need. So, whether you require respite care, or something else, contact us today to see if we can help.