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25 Best Websites That Save Time and Stress When Giving Care

25 Best Websites That Save Time and Stress When Giving Care

People who give care worry more about the other person than they do about themselves. That’s what makes them great caregivers! And who is a caregiver? The Merriam-Webster definition is: “a person who gives help and protection to someone (such as a child, an old person, or someone who is sick).”

Most people in the midst of giving care are stuck between guilt and stress and battling the relentless inner chatter of, “Do more, do more!” The pressure to do a good job is real, and to spend time mitigating the chatter is useless: a waste of time. If you’re a caregiver, that’s part of the deal.

Even the Pew Research Center’s Internet and American Life Project has a thing or two to say about giving care in the U.S. “More health care is happening at home,” said Susannah Fox, associate director at the Center. “As more people are able to be saved by medical advances, their lives are being extended, but they’re also being sent home medically fragile. It’s caregivers who are the first line of defense.”

So, how does one deal with the senseless pressure and stress of doing a perfect caring job when there’s not enough time? Firstly, acknowledge there’s no such thing as “perfect.” The Caregiver Stress Fact Sheet illustrates that you’re putting too much stress on yourself if you have any one of these symptoms:

  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Sleeping too much or too little
  • Gaining or losing a lot of weight
  • Feeling tired most of the time
  • Loss of interest in activities you used to enjoy
  • Becoming easily irritated or angered
  • Feeling constantly worried
  • Often feeling sad
  • Frequent headaches, bodily pain, or other physical problems
  • Abuse of alcohol or drugs, including prescription drugs.

Secondly, learn and accept that feelings like frustration, anger, loneliness, guilt and exhaustion are common and part of the deal. Next, take smart steps. People who take a problem-solving and active approach to care issues are less likely to feel the effects. And you’re less likely to feel stressed than those who worry too much.

Get support, starting with good, local resources, such as: your doctor, local support groups, and libraries. Then go online. Here are the 25 best caregiving support websites that save time and stress when giving care.

1. Eldercare Locator

Eldercare Locator connects caregivers to needed local services and resources for older adult help. It’s a great resource when caring for people living with disabilities.

Eldercare Locator

    2. AssistedLivingFacilities.org

    This site lists information on over 36,200 state-licensed assisted living facilities to help you locate the best assisted living facility for a loved one.

    Assisted Living Facilities.org

      3. AARP

      Information and support for people with Alzheimer’s disease and their caregivers. Operates a 24/7 helpline and care navigator tools.

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      AARP Caregiver Resources

         4. Family Care Navigator

        The Navigator helps caregivers locate public, nonprofit, and private programs and services nearest their loved one—living at home or in a residential facility.

        Family Caregiver State by State Resource

          5. Medicare.gov

          This site offers what every caregiver needs to know. Get resources, stories, and newsletters about taking care of someone on Medicare.

          Medicare.gov

            6. Next Step in Care

            Caregivers can download a variety of patient-care tools that instruct how to give better care.

            Next Step in Care

              7. HRSA

              Health centers that care for you, even if you have no health insurance. You pay what you can afford, based on your income.

              Health and Human Services

                8. National Alliance for Caregiving

                A nonprofit coalition of national organizations focusing on issues of family caregivers.

                NAIC Resources for Caregivers

                  9. The Empowered Patient Coalition

                  This site provides resources enabling patients to take control of their medical treatments.

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                  Empowered Patient Coalition

                    10. National Institute on Aging

                    Find a wide variety of research-based information and resources related to health and aging.

                    National Institute on Aging

                      11. University of Kentucky

                      Self-care for patients and people seeking intentional actions to take to care for physical, mental and emotional health.

                      University of Kentucky

                        12. Best Hospitals by USNews.com

                        Find and rank the best adult and children’s hospitals. U.S. News analyzes data for almost 5,000 centers.

                        US News Health

                          13. The National Clearinghouse for Long-term Care

                          Find information and tools to plan for future long-term care needs, and learn all about long-term care.

                          LongTermCare.gov

                            14. HomeHealthCareAgencies.com

                            Extensive home health care information and a directory listing of over 12,445 Medicare-certified home health agencies and 20,746 other home care companies.

                            Home Health Care Agencies

                              15. Social Security Administration

                              Information on retirement and disability benefits, including how to sign up.

                              Social Security

                                16. Veterans Administration

                                Support and services for families caring for veterans. This site has a VA caregiver support line and offers useful information on taking care of a veteran and how to learn to care of yourself too.

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                                Veterans' Caregivers

                                  17. Alzheimer’s Association

                                  Get information and support for people with Alzheimer’s disease and their caregivers. Operates a 24/7 helpline and care navigator tools.

                                  Alz.org

                                    18. Alzheimers.gov

                                    Access the government’s free information resource about Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias.

                                    Alzheimer's Gov

                                      19. AlzOnline

                                      This site offers quality caregiver support, education, and information.

                                      AlzOnline

                                        20. State Health Insurance Assistance Program

                                        A program that offers one-on-one insurance counseling and assistance to people with Medicare and their families in all states.

                                        State Health Insurance Help

                                          21. FDA.gov [email protected]

                                          Search by drug name, active ingredient, or application number for medications you need help understanding.

                                          FDA Drug Information

                                            22. Caregiving.com

                                            When you care for a family member or friend, this site cares for you; a community of caregivers sharing stories, support and solutions.

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                                            Caregiving.com

                                              23. Caring Across Generations

                                              Brings together aging Americans, people with disabilities, workers, and their families to protect all Americans’ right to choose the care and support they need.

                                              Caring Across Generations

                                                24. Patients Like Me

                                                Making healthcare better for everyone through sharing, support, and research. Learn from others. Connect with them. Track your health.

                                                Patients Like Me

                                                  25. SkilledNursingFacilities.org

                                                  Offers a nationwide directory listing of over 15,600 nursing homes. It also gives detailed Medicare quality ratings, inspection information and filed complaints to help consumers research.

                                                  Skilled Nursing Homes

                                                    Use these 25 information-packed, caregiving support websites to help you deal with the frustrations that accompany giving care. You’ll find peace of mind and relief.

                                                    Good health! Good caregiving. And most of all take good care of yourself!

                                                    Featured photo credit: LivHOME via livhomeblog.com

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                                                    Last Updated on February 15, 2019

                                                    7 Tools to Help Keep Track of Goals and Habits Effectively

                                                    7 Tools to Help Keep Track of Goals and Habits Effectively

                                                    Now that 2011 is well underway and most people have fallen off the bandwagon when it comes to their New Year’s resolutions (myself included), it’s a good time to step back and take an honest look at our habits and the goals that we want to achieve.

                                                    Something that I have learned over the past few years is that if you track something, be it your eating habits, exercise, writing time, work time, etc. you become aware of the reality of the situation. This is why most diet gurus tell you to track what you eat for a week so you have an awareness of the of how you really eat before you start your diet and exercise regimen.

                                                    Tracking daily habits and progress towards goals is another way to see reality and create a way for you clearly review what you have accomplished over a set period of time. Tracking helps motivate you too; if I can make a change in my life and do it once a day for a period of time it makes me more apt to keep doing it.

                                                    So, if you have some goals and habits in mind that need tracked, all you need is a tracking tool. Today we’ll look at 7 different tools to help you keep track of your habits and goals.

                                                    Joe’s Goals

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                                                      Joe’s Goals is a web-based tool that allows users to track their habits and goals in an easy to use interface. Users can add as many goals/habits as they want and also check multiple times per day for those “extra productive days”. Something that is unique about Joe’s Goals is the way that you can keep track of negative habits such as eating out, smoking, etc. This can help you visualize the good things that you are doing as well as the negative things that you are doing in your life.

                                                      Joe’s Goals is free with a subscription version giving you no ads and the “latest version” for $12 a year.

                                                      Daytum

                                                        Daytum

                                                        is an in depth way of counting things that you do during the day and then presenting them to you in many different reports and groups. With Daytum you can add several different items to different custom categories such as work, school, home, etc. to keep track of your habits in each focus area of your life.

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                                                        Daytum is extremely in depth and there are a ton of settings for users to tweak. There is a free version that is pretty standard, but if you want more features and unlimited items and categories you’ll need Daytum Plus which is $4 a month.

                                                        Excel or Numbers

                                                          If you are the spreadsheet number cruncher type and the thought of using someone else’s idea of how you should track your habits turns you off, then creating your own Excel/Numbers/Google spreadsheet is the way to go. Not only do you have pretty much limitless ways to view, enter, and manipulate your goal and habit data, but you have complete control over your stuff and can make it private.

                                                          What’s nice about spreadsheets is you can create reports and can customize your views in any way you see fit. Also, by using Dropbox, you can keep your tracker sheets anywhere you have a connection.

                                                          Evernote

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                                                            I must admit, I am an Evernote junky, mostly because this tool is so ubiquitous. There are several ways you can implement habit/goal tracking with Evernote. You won’t be able to get nifty reports and graphs and such, but you will be able to access your goal tracking anywhere your are, be it iPhone, Android, Mac, PC, or web. With Evernote you pretty much have no excuse for not entering your daily habit and goal information as it is available anywhere.

                                                            Evernote is free with a premium version available.

                                                            Access or Bento

                                                              If you like the idea of creating your own tracker via Excel or Numbers, you may be compelled to get even more creative with database tools like Access for Windows or Bento for Mac. These tools allow you to set up relational databases and even give you the option of setting up custom interfaces to interact with your data. Access is pretty powerful for personal database applications, and using it with other MS products, you can come up with some pretty awesome, in depth analysis and tracking of your habits and goals.

                                                              Bento is extremely powerful and user friendly. Also with Bento you can get the iPhone and iPad app to keep your data anywhere you go.

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                                                              You can check out Access and the Office Suite here and Bento here.

                                                              Analog Bonus: Pen and Paper

                                                              All these digital tools are pretty nifty and have all sorts of bells and whistles, but there are some people out there that still swear by a notebook and pen. Just like using spreadsheets or personal databases, pen and paper gives you ultimate freedom and control when it comes to your set up. It also doesn’t lock you into anyone else’s idea of just how you should track your habits.

                                                              Conclusion

                                                              I can’t necessarily recommend which tool is the best for tracking your personal habits and goals, as all of them have their quirks. What I can do however (yes, it’s a bit of a cop-out) is tell you that the tool to use is whatever works best for you. I personally keep track of my daily habits and personal goals with a combo Evernote for input and then a Google spreadsheet for long-term tracking.

                                                              What this all comes down to is not how or what tool you use, but finding what you are comfortable with and then getting busy with creating lasting habits and accomplishing short- and long-term goals.

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