Being a caregiver for your loved one with Alpha-1 is an important and rewarding role.

There are many ways to be a caregiver. You may provide support in managing your loved one’s condition, such as helping to organize doctor appointments. You may provide practical assistance, such as bathing and dressing, paying bills, shopping, and providing transportation. You may also provide emotional support.

Care for Yourself While Caring for Someone with Alpha-1 

For many people, caregiving comes with its own unique set of challenges, including:

  • Emotional and physical stress
  • Time management
  • Financial strain
  • Ability to work
  • Maintaining good physical and mental health

It’s important to try to seek a balance between caregiving and living your own life. These tips may help:

  • Take time for yourself
  • Ask for help
  • Accept help when it is offered
  • Focus on what the person diagnosed with Alpha-1 can do for themselves 
  • Celebrate successes, big and small
  • Join a caregiver support group
  • Keep a journal
  • Create a plan for emergencies 
  • Maintain intimacy with a romantic partner if you are their caregiver

The Alpha-1 Peer Guide Program 

The Alpha-1 Peer Guide Program connects caregivers of people newly diagnosed with Alpha-1 to other caregivers. This program provides a unique opportunity for caregivers to discuss shared experiences and challenges of Alpha-1. 

Visit the Eldercare Locator to find support for older adults and their families