Taking care of someone else can sometimes have a toll on your physical and mental health1, but it doesn’t have to.
When you’re supporting someone with scleroderma, it can be hard to find a balance between your caregiving routine and other commitments, interests or hobbies. But just as the person you care for might have their own goals in life, so should you.
Many caregivers report feeling isolated.3 With so many other responsibilities it can be difficult to make time to see other people. But this is important. Don't be afraid to ask for help (e.g. taking the kids to school, cooking dinner) to make time for yourself.
Working while supporting
There is no ‘one size fits all’ solution for caring for someone while working. Take time to think about what support is right for you.
It may help to explain the issues you face to your employer. This will mean they are aware of the situation if you experience problems or need some time off. You may also be able to discuss flexible ways of working.
Examples of flexibility include:
- Making changes to your working pattern, such as flexible hours or working from home – Employers who support such arrangements report increased staff loyalty, goodwill and productivity.4,5
- Recognising that you may need time out for doctor’s appointments or emergencies – Plan who will cover your work, who you need to contact and how your colleagues can get the information they need to cover you.
You can seek advice from your local employment advisory service to find out what you could be entitled to in the workplace.