8. Adapting to respite care
When you and the person you care for access respite care, you may experience difficulties. You may also have some worries, for example about how the person is settling in, whether they are being well cared for, or if their routine is being disrupted.
You should find out if there are certain things worrying the person. If you know what they’re worried about, you will be better able to support and reassure them. It may also mean you can look at ways to address their worries. For example, if the person is concerned about being in an unfamiliar environment, you could ensure they take a few favourite items and some photographs with them.
Following some of the tips mentioned earlier in this factsheet might help to address some concerns. Experiencing difficulties is not unusual, and it is normal for you to feel nervous about the experience. However, these feelings shouldn’t discourage you from taking a break.
Caring for a person with dementia is a complex and challenging job. There are positive and negative aspects, and each carer will cope with their situation in different ways.
Taking a break is not always an easy decision to make, and you may feel worried or guilty. You may feel that respite care will create more stress and that the quality of the care will not be up to your standards. However, it’s important to know that having a break will do both you and the person you care for good in the long term. It may ultimately mean that you can carry on caring for longer.
For more information see Carers: looking after yourself.