With appropriate and timely support many seniors can continue to enjoy living in their own homes. Quality personal support can be an invaluable asset in maintaining the quality of life your loved one has been accustomed to. Look for these characteristics when considering personal support for your loved one.
Empathy is the core characteristic of a support worker. A superior caregiver can put themselves in the shoes of the senior they are caring for, and always strives to give the support that they would want for themselves and their loved ones. A truly empathic professional support worker tries to understand what it feels like to have limitations and the challenges of having to depend on others for care.
Seniors even more than anyone else thrive on predictability and routine. You should expect that the worker caring for your loved one is on time, on schedule and doesn’t cancel. A trusting, consistent relationship is crucial to creating a warm, comfortable environment where the intimate caretaking tasks such as bathing can be completed.
You should expect that the support worker caring for your loved one consistently exhibit patience. When faced with a senior with dementia that repeats himself or herself a superior professional support worker will respond by either listening again or compassionately redirect. They will not respond impatiently by saying “You just said that.” Tasks should also be performed patiently and not in a hurried, perfunctory manner. A skilled worker never forgets they are dealing with a human being and perform their tasks in a gentle and respectful way.
An effective caregiver must be able to switch on a dime. Health crises happen and routines must be altered. Support workers must also be flexible enough to adjust to these events as well as the changing moods of their clients. Seniors have good days and bad days as much as anyone. A good professional support worker can empower the senior by acknowledging their mood and adjust their schedule to accommodate them. This respect helps to build a deeper bond and greater trust.
The hallmark of a superior support worker is someone that can communicate with warmth and kindness. Your loved one deserves to have their professional support worker guide and assist in a compassionate way and when ever possible make their interactions light hearted and fun. This trusted relationship can be fulfilling for both parties when the support worker communicates effectively and with a loving nature.
Handing over some of your duties to a professional support worker is a big decision for many. Family caregivers often have a lot invested emotionally in trying to do it all alone. A professional support worker can relieve an enormous amount of stress on you and your loved one. Expect the best care for your loved one.