Caregiver Support Services
We recognize that you, too, need support.
At OhioHealth we know how emotionally and physically demanding it is to be a caregiver. And we know it’s a responsibility that never lets up. It can be a rewarding experience, yet stressful at times.
Senior Health Services Support for Caregivers
The John J. Gerlach Center for Senior Health offers personal consultations to help caregivers adjust to the caregiving experience. Call the Gerlach Center for more information or to schedule an appointment at (614) 566.5858.
Cancer Care Services Support for Caregivers
Our cancer care patient navigators are not only a support for cancer patients, but also for the caregiver. For more information about our patient navigator program, please call 1 (800) 752.9119.
Tips from Caregivers to Caregivers of Cancer Patients
We met with caregivers and listened to their experiences caring for a loved one with cancer. Below are the tips they shared with us.
Tips from caregivers for the newly diagnosed
- Meet with your patient navigator as soon as possible after finding out a loved one has cancer. She’ll help you sort through your emotions and overcome the overwhelming confusion about what to do next.
- When someone asks “Can I help?” say “yes.’’ Be ready with a list of household tasks they can do, from running errands to cooking meals and helping with the kids.
- Don’t be concerned if some of your friends disappear. Some people may be uneasy or scared in the presence of a cancer diagnosis.
- Find a person or a support group to talk to about your feelings and emotions and check in regularly. This will help you stay strong.
- Ask questions of your OhioHealth cancer care team. They are a source of support for you.
Tips from caregivers as treatment progresses
- Ask family and friends for help. Explain that you need help and ask if they would be willing to take an assignment. Often people want to help but they aren’t sure how.
- Learn to say “no’’ when you have to. For instance, if a friend volunteers to stay with the patient but you’re concerned about whether they can manage if a problem occurs, say no.
- Take the time to keep track of appointments, medications, timing of medications and other details. This will make you feel more in control. You can do this on a spread sheet or by filling in the OhioHealth Cancer Planner, our cancer guidebook and journal.
- Find a place where you can take a break from the topic of cancer. Socialize with friends by joining a book group or gym. If you can’t get out of the house, email or call family or friends.
Tips from caregivers after treatment is done
- Keep an eye on your loved one. If you’re concerned about anything — from how he looks to how he is managing at work — contact your doctor.
- Stay healthy together by eating nutritious foods and staying fit. Celebrate the joy of a good life together.