Staying mentally and physically well
In your role as a Carer it’s especially important that you stay fit and well as you have someone relying on you for support. This means looking after not only your physical, but also your mental wellbeing. Being a Carer means additional stress and often, additional physical tasks.
Your GP will have a register of Carers. If you are registered with your surgery, your doctor may be able to give you access to additional support, for instance, Occupational Health, and also may check on your wellbeing more often. Even if you don’t need this kind of support yet, it’s as well to be registered as this will flag up your situation to your doctor.
What Kent Carers say:
‘My consultant said that I need to go for a short walk everyday – but I can’t leave my husband alone and I’m not strong enough to push his wheelchair (carer with a heart problem)’
‘Carers often keep things to themselves and won’t ask for any help’
‘I myself have been prescribed medication for depression and stress, but nothing about my physical welfare has been mentioned’
Coping with stress and depression
Stress is part of everyday life but for many Carers, stress can be a major factor affecting their health. Stress can make it hard to cope with the demands of Caring. You can become more and more exhausted, tense and irritable, putting a strain on relationships.
The first step in dealing with stress is to recognise it is happening, symptoms can be both mental and physical and can vary from person to person.
Talking to other people who are in a similar situation can be a great help. For many this can be quite difficult, but often, it comes as a surprise that many others feel the same way as you.