Self-Care for the Caregiver: Managing Your Own Fatigue

Caregiver fatigue can be brought on by the physical and emotional demands placed on you because of the cancer diagnosis and treatment.

Below is a list of fatigue-fighting tips. It is important to maintain your own health and well-being so that you can provide the best possible care to your loved one.

  • Take time for yourself and your own needs. Watch for signs of stress such as impatience, loss of appetite, or difficulty sleeping.
  • Eat a well-balanced diet. Drink plenty of water or juice every day.
  • Exercise by taking short walks daily or at least three times a week.
  • Listen to relaxation tapes or music to help reduce stress.
  • Space your activities with short rest periods. Get a good night’s sleep.
  • Don’t overload your daily list of “things to do.” Be realistic.
  • Let family members and friends help. Delegate household chores, meals, baby sitting, or shopping.
  • Share your feelings with family members or other caregivers, or join a support group.
  • Keep the lines of communication open between your loved one, your family and friends, and the oncology nurse.
  • Give yourself credit — the care you give does make a difference.

For more information about caregiver fatigue, talk to an oncology nurse.

©  UPMC | Affiliated with the University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences
Supplemental content provided by A.D.A.M. Health Solutions. All rights reserved.

For help in finding a doctor or health service that suits your needs, call the UPMC Referral Service at 412-647-UPMC (8762) or 1-800-533-UPMC (8762). Select option 1.

UPMC is an equal opportunity employer. UPMC policy prohibits discrimination or harassment on the basis of race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, age, sex, genetics, sexual orientation, marital status, familial status, disability, veteran status, or any other legally protected group status. Further, UPMC will continue to support and promote equal employment opportunity, human dignity, and racial, ethnic, and cultural diversity. This policy applies to admissions, employment, and access to and treatment in UPMC programs and activities. This commitment is made by UPMC in accordance with federal, state, and/or local laws and regulations.

Medical information made available on UPMC.com is not intended to be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. You should not rely entirely on this information for your health care needs. Ask your own doctor or health care provider any specific medical questions that you have. Further, UPMC.com is not a tool to be used in the case of an emergency. If an emergency arises, you should seek appropriate emergency medical services.

For UPMC Mercy Patients: As a Catholic hospital, UPMC Mercy abides by the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services, as determined by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. As such, UPMC Mercy neither endorses nor provides medical practices and/or procedures that contradict the moral teachings of the Roman Catholic Church.

© UPMC
Pittsburgh, PA, USA UPMC.com