People become caregivers for different reasons; some make it a career choice while others are abruptly thrust into the role. There’s never a clear-cut way to care for an older person because every case is so different. Things can either progress rapidly or slowly.
Young At Heart, an assisted living facility in Santa Clarita, California, has compiled a list of 5 tips to guide people who are just about to start their caregiving journey.
- Talk to your loved ones about caregiving
If you have a parent who’s nearing retirement age, you may already want to consider talking to them about their care. Ask them what kind of care arrangement they would prefer and if they’d rather remain at home or live in an assisted living facility. Getting this information beforehand helps you adequately prepare and not be caught by surprise by the number of things you actually have to do to help your loved one transition to their new life.
- Let an expert guide you
Who better teach you about caregiving than an experienced caregiver? Every caregiving experience may be different but they all require of you the same qualities: alertness, compassion, patience, and good communication skills. An experienced caregiver can teach you things no guidebook would ever be able to. It would be ideal if you could ask guidance from someone whose care experience somehow mirrors what you’re about to go through with a family member.
- Learn to give time to yourself
When you’re thrust into the role of providing care to an ill family member, you may start to forget about yourself. Remember that caregiving shouldn’t be your only life. Learn to lean on other people and ask for help. If you feel like you need to take a break, then ask someone else in your family to fill in for you.
- Do your research
If you’re about to become a caregiver and don’t know the first thing about it, do your research. We live in an age where information is at our fingertips, and with a few clicks, we’ll be able to find out exactly what we want.
- Senior care options
No matter how much you want to be a caregiver, you still may not be the best person for the job. Your loved one could be going through complex health challenges that require them to be admitted to nursing homes or assisted living facilities. Begin visiting these facilities ahead of time so you’ll know what the best options are for your loved ones.
Caregiving can be scary and you may already be feeling the pressure of how you need to get everything right. It’s true that caregiving can be a daunting task, but it can also yield amazing rewards.
If you have a loved one in need of board and care for the elderly in Valencia, California, don’t hesitate to get in touch with Young At Heart.
Got any more tips for new caregivers out there? Please comment them below.