Caregivers, How to Know If You’re Stressed Out

how to know if you're stressed out

Caregiver stress creeps up on you

Caring for an older adult is a tough job that leads to caregiver stress. A big problem is that many caregivers don’t even realize they’re stressed.

There’s a story that says if you put a frog into a boiling pot of water, it will jump out immediately. But, if you put the frog in a pot of cold water and slowly raise the temperature, it won’t even notice the heat until it’s cooked.

Many caregivers are like the frog in the story. Your caregiving tasks, responsibilities, and stress levels have been increasing slowly so you don’t even notice that you’re now overwhelmed, burned out, and suffering physically.


Why it’s important to know your level of stress

Caregivers often say “It’s ok, I can handle it.” or “My friend Joan is in a much more difficult situation.” Most of us are in denial about being affected by stress.

To avoid being boiled alive like the frog, it’s important to measure your stress levels. That way, if you see that your stress is higher than it used to be or if it’s already off the charts, you’ll know when it’s critical to arrange a respite break or some caregiving help.


How to know if you’re stressed out: a quick quiz

We found a quick, free 18-question quiz that helps you monitor stress. There are 16 simple Yes / No questions about your situation and 2 basic questions about your current stress level and health.

It’s important to answer the questions honestly. This test is for your eyes only and helps you understand the reality of your situation.


What to do with your quiz score

This test is a good guideline, but isn’t an official test from a doctor. It’s a tool that helps you be honest with yourself. If you’re very stressed, the questions help you figure out what areas you need help in.


Regular check-ins are helpful

It’s a good idea to take this test regularly. Keep your previous tests and compare your scores to see if things are getting better, worse, or staying the same.

Looking at your scores relative to each other helps you figure out if you’re truly doing ok or if you need to face facts and get help ASAP.


Bottom line

Stress is sneaky and often creeps up on you. That’s how it can do so much damage to your body and mind without you even noticing. Don’t let stress build up unnoticed, take this quick quiz today.


Next Step  Take the free Caregiver Stress quiz (PDF)


You might also like:
Caregiver Stress: Are You in Denial?
How Gratitude Helps You Reduce Caregiver Stress
Being a Family Caregiver Can Kill You…Literally


By DailyCaring Editorial Staff
Source: Health in Aging
Image: Nature Stress Relief


  • Reply October 31, 2016

    Marathon John D Gaffney

    I think I’m stressed out but I Don’t care it s about taking care of my mom who s got late stage Alzheimer s Disease

    • Reply November 1, 2016


      From your comments it does sound like you’re stressed out and burned out. That doesn’t mean that you should stop being a caregiver. It just means that it’s time to get help with both physical tasks (get in-home help, try an adult day program, get help with chores / meals / cleaning, etc) and the emotional side (support groups, counseling, therapy).

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