In my short stints of helping sick family members and friends, I've developed huge admiration for people who are caregivers.  It can be a really hard job.

Keeping track of medications and appointments; providing nutritious meals, getting them to exercise when they just want to lay around, helping them to the bathroom... Those are just some of the dozens of tasks caregivers take on.  It can be exhausting, not just physically, but emotionally as well.  Hat's off to those of you who are helping a sick or handicapped loved one.

You might benefit from reviewing the top 10 tips for family caregivers at the website of the Caregiver Action Network.  Among the recommendations: Take care of your own health and take breaks when you can.  Organize medical information.  And watch out for signs of depression.  The tips are included on  a page of really helpful resources.  The whole website is really user friendly.

Another good website is geared toward caregivers in the Garden State.  You can enter your zip code and come up with New Jersey area resources.

What advice would you have for someone who's new to the role of caregiver?  What lessons have you learned along the way?