Anyone who cares for a severely injured or disabled veteran knows that sometimes it can all seem like too much. Balancing the needs of the veteran with those of family, job and everything else often leaves no time for caregivers to care for themselves.
Being the caregiver of a veteran isn't for wimps.
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has caregiver support coordinators who are just a phone call away and available to help when it all gets to be too much.
The National Caregiver Support Line at 855-260-3274 is available from 8 a.m to 11 p.m Monday to Friday and from 10:30 a.m to 6 p.m. Saturday (all times Eastern).
There are also hundreds of caregiver support personnel at the state level who may have different levels of availability.
No matter which way you seek it, help is just a quick phone call away. Sometimes, the best thing to do when you feel overwhelmed is to talk with someone who understands your situation. Often, many in your group of friends or local support agencies don't fully understand the challenges veteran caregivers face.
Besides listening and offering advice, the VA's National Caregiver Support Line can let you know about types of assistance available from the department, help you access those benefits or recommend other types of support available at your local level.
All personnel answering calls at the National Caregiver Support Line are licensed professionals and experts in VA benefits, so they can help whenever you need benefits advice, moral support or emergency support when you (or your veteran) are having a crisis. The National Caregiver Support Line lets caregivers know they are not alone and backs up that support with action.
You don't need to be in a crisis to call the support line. In fact, the best time to call is when everything is going fine. You may be surprised to learn of benefits you were unaware of, or you may be introduced to a local support assistant you can get to know on a first-name basis before a crisis strikes and the need arises.
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