Taking care of the elderly is not a job for everyone. It requires 24/7 care along with a bucket of patience. The caregiver has to give up things that once they took for granted. They must change the way of life they once lived and gear their new lifestyle to the needs of the person they are giving care to.
Taking care of the elderly requires the ability to go that extra mile when one is ready to fall from exhaustion. To be able to go for days without sleep in order to make sure the patient is stable.
Taking care of the elderly requires being willing to make one’s home handicap accessible if necessary, to make doctor appointments and transport that person back and forth. Being a full-time caregiver requires making sure that personal hygiene is a daily routine and to assist when necessary.
Taking care of the elderly demands patience, steady nerves, and most of all a sense of humor. The caregiver must remember that the person they are taking care of has lost the ability to care for themselves. They have lost their independence and this creates a sense of shame and embarrassment.
The person being taken care of might have serious illnesses that add to the fact that they can no longer care for themselves. They could be wheelchair bound, bed bound, or even have memory loss. They could have chronic COPD or be insulin dependent. All of these illness can cause mood swings resulting in lashing out at the caregiver.
If the caregiver is faint of heart or has a thin skin they will not last. The patient is not really lashing out at the caregiver they are lashing out because they now have to depend on someone else for their basic needs. The feeling of hopelessness and helplessness is overwhelming when the simplest task must be performed by another person.
Caregivers have to reach deep inside and understand how they would feel if they were on the other end of the spectrum. The elderly deserve care with respect, dignity and kindness. They did not ask for this position in life. It just happened.
If you feel that you have the what it takes to become professional caregiver or if you find yourself in the position that requires a caregiver who knows about taking care of the elderly; contact us we will be happy to answer any questions that you might have.