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SNN Presents: Caregiver Self-Care: The hardest task to do

Updated: Jan 18, 2021

13 January 2021, 6:30pm, Webinar

We may all be aware that taking good care of ourselves is fundamental to giving our best to our children. But achieving this in everyday life may be challenging, especially for parents and caregivers of children with special needs and disabilities. When we have to address the urgent needs of our children, it is not always easy to prioritise our own wellbeing. By kicking the new year off with a discussion topic on self-care, SNNHK aimed to provide attendees with some relevant information and a practical guide to managing our wellbeing in the year to come.

On the evening of 13 January, SNNHK hosted its first webinar of 2021, Caregiver Self-Care: The hardest task to do, where participants were guided through related topics by three professional speakers, from understanding how to recognise stress in ourselves to effecting self-care practices in everyday life. The informative session was complemented by a short guided meditation experience.

Dr Scarlett Mattoli, Clinical Psychologist and Neurodevelopmental Specialist, started the webinar with a presentation on understanding stress and anxiety at both the physiological and emotional levels, and how to recognise stress and anxiety in ourselves through different signs in the body. Dr Mattoli also introduced some of the positive self-care practices such as Progressive Muscle Relaxation (PMR), as well as concepts of positive psychology and the five core elements of the PERMA Model of happiness, for those of interested in exploring the concepts further.

Following this informative presentation was a ten-minute guided experiential session of Somatic practices by Clare Pemberton, a Registered Social Worker and Counsellor who utilises mindfulness practices to support her work with families. Participants were guided to try and learn some simple methods to let go of stress and emotions. It was a welcome moment to connect with ourselves and put our learning into practice.

During the last session, Dr Vanessa Wong, Psychiatrist and Lifestyle Medicine Physician, shared with participants some practical strategies for measuring stress levels using two mobile applications, and for obtaining nutrients in our diet that are essential for a healthy stress response.

The webinar closed with a Q&A session that touched on topics such as ways to address sleep issues, a balanced diet and mindful eating, and the importance of a support network, among others.

We were glad to see participants actively asking questions and we hope all were able to take away some practical tips. SNNHK would like to express our gratitude to Dr Mattoli, Miss Pemberton and Dr Wong for kindly speaking and sharing their valuable insights at our webinar.

Stay tuned for our next event, and stay well for the year ahead everyone!