Here are some holiday gathering tips for caregivers as COVID-19 continues to spread

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Over 53 million Americans are providing unpaid care to family or friends. Caregiving is on the rise, the new variant is continuing, and the restrictions that come with it are adding to caregivers' stress.

Chicago caregiving expert and co-author of "The Confident Patient," Wendy Benson offers tips to reduce stress over the holiday season.

Focus on healthy habits: Small changes can make a big difference.

Seek Balance: Don't be afraid to put other things "on hold" or say no.

Get Emotional Support: Reach out to your network for support and encouragement.

Advice on holiday gatherings

Talk to your family and friends: Start the conversation early and be open and honest about your feelings.

Set Boundaries: Ask family and friends to take safety precautions.

Practice old traditions in a new way: Keep gatherings small this year or gather with virtually.
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