CARING FOR THE CAREGIVER
Caring for a loved one battling cancer takes energy, emotional balance and at times physical strength. You may be wondering how to best support your parent or friend while still maintaining a sense of self. How can you find caregiver resources that can provide the support and assistance you need for both you and your spouse or adult child?
The following links provide select resources recommended by our team. If you don’t find what you are looking for, please contact a Rocky Mountain Cancer Centers oncology social worker who will be happy to provide further assistance.
PHYSICAL WELL-BEING SUPPORT
Maintaining your physical well-being and strength may seem impossible with all the time and energy it takes being a caregiver. The following resources can help you with ideas and resources for staying physically engaged with the world around you, providing you the strength to care for your loved one.
Please remember to connect with a primary care provider and follow up with your own health care needs. If you need assistance with resources in your area, please contact your Rocky Mountain Cancer Centers social worker.
- 9Health Fair provides an opportunity for access to low-cost health care. They believe that “getting the care you need, when you need it, isn’t too much to ask.
- eXtension: Family Caregiving Online Learning Center
- PEAK: Find out if you and your family members are eligible for Medicaid and or other public assistance programs.
- Connect for Health Colorado: Find out if you are eligible for discounted health insurance
Being a caregiver can sometimes leave you feeling isolated and emotionally depleted. The following resources can provide you support and ideas for fostering a healthy emotional balance for all you do while caring for your loved one.
Rocky Mountain Cancer Centers social workers are available to assist you by providing counseling and to connect you with appropriate resources in your area. Please contact your local Rocky Mountain Cancer Centers location to be connected with a licensed social worker at your loved one’s treatment location during business hours. If you are experiencing an emergency please do not leave a message, but call 911.
- Family Caregiver Alliance: National Center on Caregiving
- Caregiving.com: Online caregiver newsletter
- Resources for psychotherapists
- Online cancer support groups: CancerCare.org, Cancer Hope Network
- National Crisis Hotline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
Connecting with others and acquiring time for yourself may seem impossible. Getting help with practical things can provide you the gift of time.
- Reduce stress, anxiety and isolation – Your cancer experience is personal. Let your family and friends know how you’re doing. Make life easier by assigning family and friends as Care Coordinators to help manage your site and organize volunteers. Organize volunteers to help with meals, rides to treatment, errands, child care, pet care, and more. Access resources on financial issues, health insurance, treatment options, clinical trials, diagnoses, nutrition, and much more. Privacy is critical. Ensure the right people have access to comment on your site and volunteer to help you.
- Meal DeliveryGreater Denver Metro area and Colorado Springs: Project Angel Heart, 303-630-0202 or 800-381-5612
- Boulder County: Meals on Wheels, 303-772-0540
- Transportation: American Cancer Society, 800-227-2345
- Getting There Guide: Information on transportation services in the Denver Metro Area
Professional cleaning services to provide basic house cleaning for women with cancer. Check Cleaning for a Reason for availability in your area.
- Resources in Boulder County.
- Mile High United Way (Dial 2-1-1 from local area for information on many local resources. Your may also call 303-561-2111 or 866-760-6489.)
CARING FOR YOUR SPIRIT
Spirituality has different meanings for everyone, but what most people can agree with is that it can refer to the way an individual connects with and expresses meaning and purpose in one’s life. Sometimes as a caregiver it is difficult to have time to reflect on what is nurturing to you. Please feel free to contact your Rocky Mountain Cancer Centers social worker to get information on local resources in your area.
Some helpful interventions include: meditation, guided visualization, relaxation techniques, journaling, spending time in nature or connecting with a spiritual care provider.
If you would like to connect with someone who provides spiritual counseling, often a good place to start is by contacting your local hospital and asking to speak to someone in pastoral care/chaplain services. They can connect you with a non-denominational chaplain who can assist you and/or connect you with support or someone in your area affiliated with an organization of your choice.
ADDITIONAL RESOURCES FOR SENIOR CANCER PATIENTS
Caregiving as an older adult can pose numerous challenges. It can leave you feeling very isolated and confused about where to find help for both you and your loved one. The following resources can assist you in many aspects of your caregiving journey.