Home care givers often find that it is difficult to find time to care for their own physical needs while also caring for the needs for someone who depends on them for care and assistance. Trying to assist someone when they are bathing or dressing when they are also angry or combative requires special skills and techniques. Fortunately, there are some skills that caregivers can learn and use in their care plan to help meet the physical needs of the elderly easier.
Maintain Eye Contact and Stand In Front
When home care givers are assisting the elderly with a physical task such as dressing, the caregiver should approach the senior from the front. Never approach the senior from the back or the side. This type of approach can cause the senior to experience a heighten level of paranoia and/or agitation.
Gently touch the senior on the arm. Next, calmly explain what is going on. Make sure that eye contact is maintained during the entire activity.
Get the Senior Involved
Even if the elder client is frail, he or she may still be able help with their care. Ask if he or she is able to shift their bodyweight slightly or raise an arm to help make the task easier. Let the senior know what you are about to do so he or she can be prepared. The more assistance they are able to provide, the less physical work you will have to do.
Allow the Senior to Finish
It is a common mistake for people to rush others when they are running behind schedule. However, you should avoid placing the senior into a rushed environment. This type of environment can be extremely difficult for seniors who have mental impairments or memory loss. Although you may think your voice is calm, it is easy for seniors to pick up on the ‘anxiousness’ in your voice. Allow them to finish their current activity before moving on to something else.
Home care givers should refrain from any difficult physical tasks when they are not physically well. No one benefits if you become injured, and your injury can make your caregiving duties more difficult to complete. Seek assistance from another caregiver or family member if possible.
Home caregivers are valuable members in a senior’s in-home care plan. Evergreen Private Care is committed to providing the most skilled caregivers for you or your loved one. Schedule a consultation today.