The previous sections on this website are written specifically to the person diagnosed and living with Parkinson's, and we encourage you as a care partner to educate yourself on those topics as well. In this section, we speak directly to care partners. We provide tips and education for staying organized, building care plans and offering a Quick Tips section as you enter new phases of advanced care with your loved one. We also stress the importance of self-care, respite, and coping strategies as you care for your loved one with Parkinson's. Whether you are a primary care partner, or supporting the primary care partner through secondary care - this portion of the site is for you.
For most of us, we have never taken a course on caregiving. We think it will come naturally to us, but we soon learn that there are things we need to learn as we identify as a care partner for our loved ones. We will talk about care partner identification and education needed for care partners selflessly-ensuring their loved ones are cared for with dignity.
There are many care partner resources available to educate and help prepare you for being a care partner for your loved one with PD. From offerings through the Parkinson Association of Alabama and the Parkinson's Foundation, we plug you in to the ongoing resources you need throughout your care partner journey.
It's important to build your care plan in advance. We will provide insight for staying organized, planning, and keeping records. Back-up plans are important too. We will help you work with your loved one to build a care plan that works best to meet your unique needs on your specific journey with PD.
Trying to balance a high-pressure job while also being a primary care partner can be quite challenging. In this section, we provide tips on navigating your career while providing care to your loved one with PD - as well as help you understand options when it comes to the Family Medical Leave Act and Retirement.
We stress this a lot, and will continue to do so - it is critical that you also take care of yourself so that you can provide optimal care for your loved one with Parkinson's. This means getting proper rest, taking care of you, and even ways to treat yourself while on the journey. Our Self-Care toolbox, ensures you get what you need as a Care Partner too.
Caregiving can offer trials and triumphs as well as challenges and joy. Choosing to focus on the positives of being a care partner can help you to be mindful that there is joy in the journey. We look at some of the rewards of being a care partner so that you might see how meaningful this role is for your loved one with PD.
Care partners have many balls in the air that they are trying to juggle. We provide tips for active stress reduction through breathing and body awareness, muscle relaxation, and recommended aps you can download to your phone to help you take some time out for self-care and stress awareness and management.
What is respite and why do you need it? Caregiving is a tough job with long hours. To maintain your physical and emotional health and provide the best care for your loved one with Parkinson's, respite is essential. We go over who provides respite services, highlight the benefits and importance of respite, and give tips for seeking these services in your community.
You may not even be aware that you are stressed or need a break. By performing a self-assessment at regular intervals, you can identify your risk factors and shed light on your needs. Download our Care Partner Self-Assessment to better understand the impact caregiving may be currently having on you.
One of the best ways we can combat stress is to stay organized. We explore how to keep medical information organized and provide tips on communicating with health care teams, as well as preparing for medical appointments and knowing when to involve additional care team members.
As family members supporting our loved ones with Parkinson's, some of us may not be geographically located to offer hands on help. But you can still care for your loved one from afar. In this section, we provide tips on how you can be a critical part of your loved ones care team even when you don't live next door.
At some point, especially if living at home whether there is a primary care partner in the home or not, additional help will be needed. What does that look like? Is it best to hire an agency or a private caregiver? How do you interview and select the best support, and how can you prepare and manage the new relationship well?
Let's face it, we can all use tips when it comes to being able to support our loved ones with PD. In this section of the site, we offer tips for family and friends with varying scenarios to improve quality of life for your loved one with PD and make the journey a bit easier for you too!