Caregivers know the stress of juggling their own needs with those of a loved one. If you are a caregiver, you know it hard sometimes to find the help you need. Finding out how to get your loved one the right care, and then pay for it is probably one of your biggest worries, right up there with sorting out medications and providing the safest environment possible.

Steps Caregivers Can Take to Make Things Easier

You can take some steps to make things a little easier:

Keep records. Gather contact information for family members, insurance documents, financial records, and other important documents. You’re not being nosy – this information will all come in handy if you need to file for public benefits, including Medicaid.

Prepare for an emergency. Along with family contact numbers, keep emergency numbers and doctor’s phone numbers nearby. If your loved one has signed a healthcare proxy or living will, keep a copy near the door, along with insurance cards or other information you may need during an emergency.

Have an in-depth discussion with your loved one. Getting answers to the following questions will make things easier down the road.

  • What kind of emergency procedures would you like the medical providers to use?
  • Is there any end-of-life treatment you do not want?
  • Who would you like to make medical decisions for you if you are no longer able to communicate?
  • If you need 24/7 care, would you like to try in-home care? Or a nursing home?
  • At some point, you may need to move into a nursing home or assisted living facility. Have you made any plans on how to pay for that? [link to webpage about paying for nursing home care]
  • Have you signed a Will, durable power of attorney, and health care proxy? If so, are they up to date? Where are they located?
  • Would you like to speak to an attorney about updating your estate plan?

Things caregivers can do to help loved ones … and yourself.

In addition to the many other things you do, take a few moments to breathe. It may not always seem like it, but your loved one is lucky you care enough to be there. Ask others to help you – friends, family, or organizations that help the elderly.

For more ideas about how to survive being a caregiver, get a copy of our ABC’s for Caregivers Guide by visiting

We Can Help in These Difficult Times.

The attorneys and staff at Adams & Miller, P.C., stand ready to take care of your estate planning needs. Please feel free to call us and set up an appointment to discuss both your loved one’s need and yours. Our telephone number is 256-237-3339 or use our Contact Form to let us know you’d like to hear from us.