Home Care for the Elderly in their Own Homes: Important Things to Remember12 minute read
12 minute read|
Updated for February, 2019
When caring for the elderly, there are a number of important things you have to take into consideration. As well as the possibility of nursing home care and long-term care, there is an increase in the number of older people who have complex needs. There is also an increase in the amount of home support given to older people.
Some of the links on this page may link to our affiliates. Learn more about our ad policies.
Table of Contents
- The Care Provided For Seniors Should Be Person-Centered
- Dignity Is Important
- Make It A Point To Understand Them
- Be A Confidant, But Privacy Is Key
- Report All Forms Of Abuse Accordingly
- Be Reliable And Dependable
- Explore Ways To Understand Communication Disabilities
- Remember That Elderly People Desire A Good Quality Of Life
This is a great time for those giving home support services to learn one or two things about giving better care to seniors. It’s general knowledge that the greater a person’s disability, the greater their needs. However, some elderly people have said their needs are not met by those who take care of them.
Some seniors, however, also indicated that their needs are met. But, there is evidence that points to the fact that older people simply do not like complaining. However, deep down, most seniors do not have the ultimate care they desire or deserve. There is a huge gap which caregivers have to fill.
To fill these gaps, caregivers have to remember some important things the next time they take care of elderly people. So, what do you have to remember when providing in-home senior care instead of a residential care in a long-term care facility? To be honest, it is quite straightforward.
As well as any obvious health care and personal care, they are the simple things we neglect on a daily basis. They are every human’s basic inner needs; they are just needed more by older people.
You are there to help them retain their dignity by giving them ultimate respect. Your little show of respect and proper care can make all the difference for an older person.
Dignity Is Important
Life gets less fun as people age. Aging occurs to everybody irrespective of status and wealth. Many elderly people you take care of feel sadness, pain, boredom, illness, and loneliness. They can easily lose their dignity to those taking care of them. They know they can’t control anything or anyone.
Now, they have to listen to you and take your orders even when it doesn’t feel right to them. The inability to prepare meals, to bathe themselves, and carry out basic activities they were used to can tear them apart from within. Many even lose their mobility. These circumstances were unthinkable to them some years back.
Your job is to help them regain that confidence. You are there to help them retain their dignity by giving them ultimate respect. Your little show of respect and proper care can make all the difference for an older person.
While caring for the elderly in their own homes, you can support them to complete some tasks on their own; you can even sit down with them for a few minutes and chat about anything they want. After all, who doesn’t like a natter and a catch-up?
Make It A Point To Understand Them
This is not only good for the senior you are taking care of it is also good for you in the long run. Even the best caregivers know that senior people can sometimes become a little grumpy or can easily forget things. It is your job to know these things. Older people may also seem to act like babies, but this kind of behavior is never intentional.
They are merely a display of the decline in the cognitive abilities. They may say things you don’t agree with or things that infuriate you—but you have to remain calm and understand it. Be Patient. Understand elderly people and see how happy you both will be together.
It is vital to be like a friend with the person you are caring for. It helps you to understand each other better and ensures a good relationship.
Be A Confidant, But Privacy Is Key
Being a confidant means you and the older person can talk about things and laugh. You both can open up to how daunting it is to raise children if you have one. However, do not cross the line. It is vital to be like a friend with the person you are caring for. It helps you to understand each other better and ensures a good relationship.
However, sharing things that need to be kept private means you are going over the top. For example, the relatives of the senior might be having a dispute about their health. Inasmuch as this topic has something to do with you, it doesn’t concern you in any way. Stay clear of family disputes and don’t share your own private life that you don’t want to be shared with anyone else.
Report All Forms Of Abuse Accordingly
Elderly people can be a little grumpy and it might lead them to become a little abusive toward the individual caring for them. You are not expected to take your turn and it is not even advisable to gossip about such an occurrence. The best you should do is to report such form of abuse to the appropriate person. The refusal to take this gentle approach might lead to severe repercussions that you wouldn’t like.
Be Reliable And Dependable
Elderly people can easily lose trust in a caregiver if they arrive late or do not keep to agreed deadlines. Unlike young men and women, many older people do not have the patience to keep trusting someone who keeps failing on his promises. You have to present yourself as someone they can rely on, someone they can depend on.
Most of the elderly people have lived independent lives for years. This makes it almost impossible for them to rely on someone who has seemingly made herself unreliable. There are cases where an older person would take the chance to care for herself when the caregiver doesn’t arrive on time.
This could lead to dangerous consequences. The falling of a staircase is one of the possibilities of an older person giving care to herself. The point is not to present a scary scene; you just have to know that your reliability counts.
Explore Ways To Understand Communication Disabilities
Some elderly people who are experiencing some forms of communication disabilities do not find it easy communicating with others. For example, a stroke may affect someone’s speech. Many older people also struggle to hear what people are saying.
Sometimes, you have to speak up a little and expand your mouth to show your expression of the words you pronounce. You only have to explore different methods which you can use to communicate with them. Their will to communicate will make it easier for you to understand them too.
Remember That Elderly People Desire A Good Quality Of Life
You might see in-home care as a way to make money, but senior citizens see it in a different way. To them, it is a way to improve their quality of living. It is the time to get their living space organized to meet their social and emotional needs. They see you as someone who will help them achieve all that.
They are putting all of their trust and ability to you. They want to move even if they have mobility issues. They want to visit the world outside their door. It is now your job to help them achieve all that. You might think they are old, but they want to make new friends. They want to follow the interesting TV series that you follow.
They want to enjoy their lives as much as possible. You can be that number one friend they seek. Loneliness is a constant problem for elders. You can help them avoid depression. You are right in the mix of improving someone’s quality of life. That is probably the most important thing you should remember when giving care to an older person at their home.
Caring for the elderly at home can be quite a challenge for caregivers. However, you can make it simple for yourself. Most elderly people do not ask for much. Most simply want to be heard. They want to feel like they are really the humans they were 20 years ago. They want you to care for them in a way they deserve.
If you take enough time to listen to their needs and communicate with them while being reliable and dependable, you will see that caring for older adults can really be simple and easy—a totally rewarding experience for you and the person you are looking after.