The assessment isn’t to judge your ability to care. You don’t have to feel that it is your responsibility to provide all the care that the person you look after needs or feel guilty that you can’t do it all.
During your assessment you are encouraged to talk about what areas are working well, what you enjoy doing and, without support, what you struggle with in order to provide the care the person you look after needs.
Before your assessment, you should think about the following:
- Will you be able to talk freely if the person you look after is present?
- Do you want to, or are you able to, carry on caring for the person you look after?
- If you are prepared to continue, is there anything, or anyone that could make life easier for you? Think about all the tasks you would like help with, putting the most important first.
- Are there any family, friends or neighbours who support you in your caring role?
- Is there a plan in place to look after the person you care for if you were suddenly unable to care for any reason? Do you need support to put a plan in place?
- Do you have any physical or mental health problems, including stress or depression, that make your role as a carer difficult?
- What might a good day/week look like?
- Does being a carer affect your relationships with other people, including family and friends?
- Are there things that you find enjoyable and relaxing that you struggle to do now because of your caring role? For example hobbies, seeing friends, exercise?
- If you have a job, does your employer know you are a carer? Do you and they know about your rights? E.g. time off in an emergency.
- What might make juggling working and caring easier for you?
- Without additional support, is there a risk that you might not be able to continue caring for the person you look after?
- Do you have time to look after your own health and wellbeing?
- What aspects of your caring role do you enjoy or that you feel you do well?
- What aspect of your caring role do you struggle with? Who or what could help you?
If it’s useful you can make notes regarding the above to use during your assessment. It might help to talk things through with family and friends, or keep a diary for a week about the care you are providing and how it affects you.