Many seniors opt to live in their own homes rather than a nursing home due to their freedom and independence. Who would like to leave the home they’ve lived their entire lives in? This opens up the opportunity for home caregivers. Caregivers are the life savers of many seniors and hence you have a big responsibility on your shoulders. So here are some tips when taking care of an elder in their own homes.
- Dignity is important
It’s of course hard on them to now not be able to get things done on their own. They need to take your orders and this will frustrate them. You need to ensure they don’t feel threatened and weakened by you. Rather, you need to ensure they feel valued and respected. Talk to them, know their great stories in the past, their achievements and good work and let them know that they have been good parents and citizens. They will regain their confidence and will start taking life positively, rather than lamenting on what they can’t do. Know that they feel vulnerable and lonely, especially as they are not in an Auckland residential care so give them the respect they deserve. You can also find a hobby that the elder will perform well in and join in.
- Be a friend but privacy is key
Talking to the elder and letting them share their feelings and stories is vital as they will feel less burdened and more relaxed around you. You need to create a friendly environment where they feel like sharing any grievances. They may feel isolated at home rather than in a retirement village and hospital Auckland so be his or her friend. However, as much as you are a friend, you need to understand the fine line between friendship and invading their privacy. If the elder is telling you secrets and requests you keep them to yourself, which will become quite a problem. You can politely refuse. They will understand your boundaries and limitations. Do not get into their family disputes, keep your opinions to yourself and also don’t share much about your own private life.
- The care should be person-centered
Each individual elder has individual needs to be taken care. Their illnesses and requirements are different so caregivers have to be well trained in providing services that is customized to each elder. Even elders are humans and are entitled to same rights as you. They have the same needs such as love, affection, kindness, freedom etc. You should be able to respect that. It is your responsibility to meet the elder’s doctor, know details on the prescriptions and the dosages of each medication.