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Holidays stressful for caregivers

READ MORE: Holidays stressful for caregivers
WILMINGTON -- It's a wonderful time of year, but all the holiday cooking, shopping and entertaining can cause a lot of stress. That can be especially true for people who care for others. The holidays are stressful enough. When you add the responsibility of caring for a loved one, it can get overwhelming. It's important to make time for yourself and not feel guilty about it. Gail Gibson takes care of her 98-year-old mother who suffers from dementia. She says if you don't take care of yourself first, you won't be able to properly take care of your loved ones. Her holiday advice is to bring the celebration to the person receiving care so he or she is in a familiar place. Also, don't be afraid to delegate responsibility to friends and family. If you need to take time to cook or shop, it's OK to ask someone to spend a few hours with the person you care for. Gibson said, "I think that's the main thing, not to feel guilty when you can't do everything. You can't do everything for her and everything for you and your children. You have to juggle." Keep it simple at the holidays. Experts say you may have to change or cut back on family traditions, but it will reduce your stress level. There are caregiver support groups around the area. For more information visit http://www.hospiceandlifecarecenter.org/

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