Time out from caring

Everybody needs some time to themselves. Getting time for yourself can be good for you and the person you care for.

Asking for help from family or friends

If you are comfortable with the idea, ask family, friends or perhaps a neighbour to provide a small amount of care. This could be a couple of hours a week to give you time to relax or catch up on seeing friends.

A local care group may be able to provide half a day's care a few times a month. There are carers' groups in many parts of the country. Some areas have carers workers whose job is to co-ordinate groups and get support for people.

Short-term care

Some Health and Social Care (HSC) Trusts provide different services to give carers a break. The same services aren't available in all areas and there might be a waiting time for some services.  

Trusts can arrange:

  • a day-sitting service for shopping, visiting friends and other activities
  • a night-sitting service to allow a carer to get a full night's sleep
  • a short-term stay in a care home for the person you care for
  • time in a day centre for the person being cared for
  • an opportunity for the person being cared for to go out with others, allowing you time to yourself at home

Short-term breaks

Your HSC Trust may work with voluntary organisations or charities across the country and involve specialist short-break providers to offer you a break.

A short-term break doesn't necessarily mean going away from home. You and the person you care for may want to stay together during a break - or you may not.

What's important is that you and the person you care for are happy with any arrangements that are made.


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