A respite zone is an area set aside just for you to relax. This space could be your bedroom, a spare room, or an office. It should be a place for you to take a break while your loved one living with dementia rests or is taken care of by someone else.
Here are some things to note while creating your respite zone:
• Find a suitable space in your home, such as a spare room.
• Use a screen or a curtain for privacy if you cannot close the door.
• Keep in mind what you want to do there, such as read, paint or write.
• Modify the space according to your needs. Keep whatever is necessary for your respite activity.
• Set aside the time to use it, such as during your loved one’s naptime, or when someone takes over your caregiving duties.
Your respite zone should be a place you created. The objective is to have a place of your own where you can relax and do things unrelated to your role as a caregiver.
You can consider surfing the Internet or indulging in leisure activities or creative projects, like painting, sewing, writing, baking, gardening or photography, as long as they allow you to take your mind off your responsibilities.
Your respite zone should be just for you. You need to feel secure in your respite zone. It is important for the people you live with to understand that this space is yours. It is not selfish to set aside space and time for yourself. Without the space, time and the opportunity to be with your own thoughts, your caregiving journey may be harder than it has to be.
Taking care of a person living with dementia can be a difficult job. However, if you do not take time off and create space for yourself, what will happen if you fall sick?
Respite care is necessary for you and your care recipient’s well-being.