You may not need to complete an interview and application process to be a family caregiver, but you do need to possess certain skills that help you provide the best care you can. These six skills are all necessary for you to be an excellent family caregiver, and each one is worth cultivating as you continue to provide your senior loved one with care.
1. Strong Time Management Abilities
Your schedule will be filled with something to do almost every minute of the day. As a caregiver, you need to know how to get your daily tasks done while still making it to appointments on time. While you might occasionally be off by a few minutes, your loved one will thrive when you’re able to stick to a fairly routine schedule.
A professional caregiver can be a wonderful source of support. Coral Gables elderly home care experts are available to provide high-quality care to seniors on an as-needed basis. From assistance with mobility and exercise to providing transportation to the doctor’s office and social events, there are a variety of ways professional caregivers can help your aging loved one continue to live independently.
2. A Compassionate Mindset
Your loved one needs you to express empathy and compassion during times when he or she is facing challenges. A compassionate mindset can help you find the right things to say when your loved one is feeling down or anxious. While you may sometimes get frustrated yourself, it’s important to be able to express love and kindness to your loved one throughout the day.
3. The Ability to Notice Subtle Changes
You must constantly be on your toes as a caregiver. Your loved one depends on you to notice if he or she begins to experience side effects from medication or develops a complication after a recent hospitalization. Ideally, you should be able to pick up on subtle signs that your loved one needs help, such as seeing him or her strain to open a jar or shake while chopping vegetables.
Caring for a senior loved one can be challenging for families who don’t have expertise or professional training in home care, but this challenge doesn’t have to be faced alone. Family caregivers can turn to Home Care Assistance for the help they need. We provide high-quality live-in and respite care as well as comprehensive Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care.
4. An Interest in Research and Learning
You may also find yourself needing to learn about new health conditions your loved one develops. While you don’t want to go overboard searching for information online, it can help to read up on your loved one’s new diagnosis or talk about it in a support group. Your loved one’s doctor will also have information you need to know, and having a thirst for knowledge can make it easier to absorb new recommendations for your loved one’s care.
5. A Flexible Mindset
Things can change in an instant, and you need to be prepared to respond. For instance, you might start out with the intention of being the sole caregiver, but your loved one’s health could take a turn for the worse. Being willing to look for solutions to the new issues you face helps you continue to provide high-quality care to your loved one.
6. Physical Strength and Energy
You might not picture yourself as a weightlifter, but you may find caregiving is physically challenging. You may need to help lift your loved one, and household chores may wear you out. Take care of your body, and remember you need exercise and rest, too. Take time out to keep your physical strength up so you have plenty of energy when your loved one needs extra care.
Family caregivers need to care for their own wellbeing. If you’re caring for an aging loved one and are feeling overwhelmed, consider hiring a professional caregiver to provide respite care. Coral Gables families who want to prevent burnout can turn to Home Care Assistance. One of our professional caregivers can assist your loved one at home while you take a nap, go to work, run errands, or go on vacation. Reach out to one of our Care Managers today at 1 (305) 964-5636 to schedule a free in-home consultation.