Caring can be rewarding but it can also be very tiring, placing demands on your physical and emotional energy. As a carer you need to be as healthy as possible to ensure you are able to continue with your caring role.
It's easy when you are coping day to day and responding to the needs of others, to forget your own wellbeing. Whether you've been a Carer for a while, or are new to caring, life can feel pretty tough. The good news is that there is a lot of information and support available to you. The bad news is that often we don't know what we are looking for, or it's not that easy to find. This booklet is designed to be a quick read which, whilst we hope will be useful in its own right, will point you in the right direction. Anything we mention here is listed in the 'For More Help' section on pages 26-30.
When we set out to write this booklet we wanted it to appeal to Carers and to those who have not yet recognised that they might be a 'Carer'. We felt there was a need for a short, practical booklet that focuses on the important subject of health and wellbeing. We hope it fills this gap and that, now you've picked it up, you find it a source of support and strength.
To request a free copy of the booklet, please contact the Ceredigion Contact Team on 01545 574000. Alternatively contact Ceredigion Carers Development Office on 01970 633564.
To provide feedback on the Say 'I'm Fine'...and Mean it! carers booklet, please visit the following link: www.surveymonkey.com
There are also a number of ways in which you can help yourself to manage and keep a check on your health.
Register yourself as a carer with your G.P
Carers are being urged to register as a Carer with their GP surgery as part of Investors in Carers scheme, an initiative by Hywel Dda University Health Board.
The Investors in Carers (IiC) is an accredited award framework for GP Practices within the Hywel Dda Region (Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion & Pembrokeshire). The scheme is an initiative by Hywel Dda University Health Board that aims to measure standards of good practice delivered by GP Practices to support carers. To achieve the Bronze Investors in Carers Award, GP Practices are required to have the following:
- Information for Carers
- A dedicated Carers Information Board
- Staff training
- A Registration/referral process
There is a leaflet and form on this website for you to download and take to your GP surgery. They will make a note on your records that you are a Carer and maybe able to help you with flexible appointments, a health check up etc. but this will vary so it is best to speak with the Carer Lead, if the surgery has one, or the Practice Manager. You will find more information on their notice board in the surgery.
Get help with Lloyds Pharmacy
Lloydspharmacy recognises the valuable but difficult role that carers play in society and have partnered with Carers UK to provide support to carers in their caring role, as well as understand and offer services to improve their health.
Lloydspharmacy has a carers section on their website which has a lot of useful information specifically aimed at carers. Visit the Lloyds Pharmacy website for more information: www.lloydspharmacy.com
Blood pressure test
Lloydspharmacy have a free blood pressure testing service, it only takes a few minutes and you don't usually need an appointment
Lloydspharmacy offers a free diabetes test to help identify your risk of developing diabetes.
Cholesterol and Heart Check
Lloydspharmacy have a cholesterol and heart Check. The 10-15 minute consultation will take several readings, including cholesterol levels and blood pressure, to estimate your risk of developing heart disease. And you'll get your results straight away along with a personalised action plan to help care for your heart
A regular eye test is a vital health check for your eyes. Conditions like glaucoma, cataracts, diabetes and age-related conditions can seriously affect your vision. Lloydspharmacy are offering a home eye test for people who find it difficult to get to a local store. To check your eligibility for a home eye test, visit the website at: www.lloydspharmacy.com
NHS Carers Direct
NHS Carers Direct can offer free, confidential information and advice for carers by telephoning their NHS Carers Direct Helpline 0808 802 0202 or email: CarersDirect@nhschoices.nhs.uk
It also has a website that has a vast range of information for carers on how to look after you whilst taking care of someone else. The website has tips on fitness, healthy eating, keeping stress levels down and advice on how to access respite care and the different types of respite care available. It also has legal information and advice on how to access advocacy services.
For more information visit the NHS Carers Direct Website: www.nhs.uk
Carers UK displays a great deal of information on their website about; carers taking care of their health, managing medicines, good sleep tips, coping with stress and taking care of your back. For more information visit the Carers UK website: www.carersuk.org