Practical Tips for Caregivers: The Value of Teamwork

Caregivers are prone to feel like we have to do everything ourselves. We know the routine. We know the medications. We are in charge—and we're responsible.

As a result, we ignore the single most frequently proffered piece of advice: Take care of yourself first.

But here's a question: If you were hit by a bus tomorrow, what would happen? Who would care for your loved one? Could they? Do they have the knowledge base?

Not if you haven't shared.

Now is a good time to get started. Figure out who else should be on the care team. Enlist their participation. Set up a system to help share all the pertinent information. Schedule them to help you—to take an hour or an afternoon with your loved one. To do shopping or research. To coordinate doctors' appointments.

It will be good for you. It will be good for them. And, most importantly, it will be good for the person you are caring for. Promise.