How Light Therapy Can Help Caregivers

Fortunately, Spring is just around the corner. Unfortunately, as many West Coast dwellers know all too well, it does not mean the end of overcast days.
If you know that you suffer from SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder), or you’re simply aware that you feel down during the cold, dark months, you may benefit from a light therapy box.

Light Therapy Boxes deliver a bright light that mimics outdoor light, and has been shown to boost moods and energy when people sit near them. They have been used to treat depression, SAD, sleep disorders, and even dementia. So, how can they help caregivers?

Caregivers often experience low-moods and sleep deprivation, and light therapy may help with these challenges. Try starting flipping on a light therapy box first thing in the morning and writing in a journal, reading, or meditating for 30 minutes before getting out of bed. If you can carve out some time in the early afternoon, have your lunch or some tea next to your light.

If you are curious about trying a light therapy box, the best thing to do first is consult your doctor. Certain conditions, such as bi-polar disorder, may require specific guidelines for use, and your doctor will be able to advise you if it’s appropriate for you or your care partner. Make sure that when you’re purchasing a light therapy box, you are buying one that is 10,000 lux or above to reap the therapeutic effects.

Have you tried using a light therapy box? We’d love to hear about your experience!

Cassandra Van Dyck

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3rd Annual Caregiver Expo

2018 Caregiver Expo-page-001

If you’ve been on the fence about visiting the 3rd Annual Caregiver Expo this Saturday, we hope that this post will sway you to pop by – if only for a little while! Expect to be greeted with warm smiles and a lively atmosphere. Booths from local services and resources will be set up so you can explore at your leisure. Presentations will run throughout the day. Come by to catch your favourite speaker talk, or stay for the long haul! Join us to connect, learn, and to celebrate the incredible role you play in a loved one’s life. 

Presentation Schedule

9:15- 9:30AM
Laughter Yoga
John Wallstrom

Laughter Yoga involves guided exercises that are lighthearted and easy to follow. Laughter strengthens the immune system, releases feel-good endorphins and lowers blood pressure. Come and have a laugh with us!

9:30 -10:00AM
Family communication and the power of boundaries
Jodie MacDonald

With a focus on somatic awareness and breathwork, this talk will help caregivers navigate the complexities of family dynamics and sibling relationships, learning to separate their own needs from the needs of others, through boundary practice and insight into habitual patterns of relating.

10:15- 10:45
The Rollercoaster of Grief
Robin Rivers

Grieving the loss of a loved one or anticipating the loss can be challenging, no matter how long you have been in a caring role. Learn about ideas to help you on your grief journey and resources that are available in the community.

11:00- 11:30
Re-filling your Cup: Preventing Caregiver Burnout
Karyn Davies

Join us in learning to recognize what activities give you energy, and which ones drain your mental, emotional and physical energy reserves.  Become aware of the major signs of burnout, while considering how you can re-fill your own reservoirs of hope and strength.

11:45- 12:35 (50 minute keynote)
Energy to Care: the science of how to balance self-care with giving
Dr. Maia Love

How do you care for yourself as you help a loved one through a health crisis? Learn key tools and skills to support your own health and wellness as you care for others; understand the wellness science to lift your energy and recharge your mind.

1:00- 1:30PM

  1. 1. Inspiring your best quality of life: The Everyday Counts Program
    Jane Jordan (15 minutes)

Learn about the Every Day Counts Program, a free support program for individuals living with a life-limiting illness. The program offers access to services and supports that are designed to enhance quality of life and are available whenever individuals feel they need them.

  1. All Ready to Go
    Stephen Garrett (15 minutes)

Learn about accessible and affordable options for pre-planning a loved one’s funeral arrangements. Having a plan can greatly reduce stress for family members during a time of loss.

1:45- 2:15
Qi Gong to boost your energy
Caroline MacGillvray

Together we’ll practice some accessible, fun Qi Gong exercises. Qi Gong is designed to help you let go of stress and tension, energize your body and mind, and create feelings of peace.

2:30- 3:00
The importance of having a Power of Attorney and Representation Agreement
Jackie Morris

This presentation will focus on two important legal documents, a Power of Attorney and a Representation Agreement, what they do and the pros and cons of alternatives.