Caring for an elderly person is a huge responsibility and is a difficult task. Elderly adults are highly dependent on their caregivers. Caregivers have to take up several roles such as nurse, counselor, friend and even a parent at times.
Thinking of becoming a caregiver? Here are the 3 skills all caregivers need to master:
It’s very easy to become frustrated by sick, elderly people. Family caregivers will soon realize that as their loved one ages, they begin to act like children. They are stubborn, they can throw tantrums and they really don’t know what’s good for them. Instead of getting overwhelmed and snapping at them, take a deep breath and put yourself in their shoes.
Mentally debilitating diseases such as Dementia and Alzheimer’s are most difficult to manage for caregivers. Caregivers need to realize that it’s the patients aggressive behavior isn’t their fault, these diseases leave patients confused and aggravated. Their inability to express themselves only makes the situation worse.
It’s imperative for caregivers to be empathetic when looking after elderly people; they have enough problems as it is, an insensitive caregiver does not help.
Caregivers need to be able to split their time between their own responsibilities and their duties to the elderly person they are looking after.
It’s best to create a schedule to plan the day’s activities. Elderly people are usually on a lot of medication so medication management is a big part of a caregiver’s duties since elderly people tend to forget to take medicine themselves.
At the same time, the caregiver should make time for themselves to maintain a work-life balance. Family caregivers too need to allot time to relax as well; remember all caregivers need to be cared for too!
Elderly people often feel isolated and lonely. As we grow older, our group of friends shrinks. Seniors are dealing with all sorts of grief. Other than their deteriorating health, elderly people have to deal with losses of spouses and friends and their limited finances. They also feel a lack of purpose in life and struggle with the idea death and leaving the world behind.
To prevent their loved ones from falling into depression, caregivers need to find ways to communicate with them and urge them to express themselves instead of bottling up their emotions.
By being compassionate and initiating conversations, caregivers earn the trust of their loved ones.
Contact us today to learn to be a better caregiver!