Update on Coronavirus / COVID-19 and senior safety, click here for more information.

6 Things About Being a Caregiver You Probably Didn’t Know

By , 9:00 am on

It’s becoming more and more common for adults to provide care for their aging parents. Before taking on the caregiver role, family members should understand the rigors of the job. Here are six things you need to know before becoming a caregiver.

1. Caregiving Is Often Uncomfortable

Many new caregivers aren’t prepared for the uncomfortable aspects of caregiving. In theory, family members understand the day may come when their parents need help bathing or using the bathroom. It’s one thing to understand the importance of caregiving, and another to actually provide care to a loved one. Over the course of the caregiving journey, most caregivers experience moments of embarrassment and discomfort. These experiences may fundamentally change the way caregivers perceive and relate to their senior loved ones. Be prepared for these changing circumstances.

Aging adults who require assistance with the tasks of daily living can benefit from reliable home care. Folsom, CA, families trust in Home Care Assistance to provide the high-quality care their elderly loved ones need and deserve. Our caregivers are trained to help seniors prevent and manage serious illnesses and encourage them to make healthier decisions as they age.

2. The Doctor’s Aims May Not Match Up with Yours

Caregivers spend a lot of time with doctors and medical professionals. Hopefully, these doctors are sympathetic and genuinely interested in your loved one’s health. However, a doctor’s approach may not wholly align with your caregiving concerns. Caregivers are focused on providing their loved one with the highest quality of life, whereas doctors are often focused on prolonging life via medical treatment. It’s often the job of caregivers to determine when the medical treatment adversely impacts their loved one’s quality of life.

3. You Learn with Trial and Error

While there are plenty of resources devoted to caregiving, every case is different. Most caregivers learn on the job via trial and error. As caregivers cycle through time management techniques and new routines, they can discover the methods that work best for them. Don’t be afraid to get things wrong at first, since it is often the best way to learn.

4. There Will Be a Lot of Paperwork

Caregivers are often surprised by the piles of paperwork they have to sift through and sign every week. The paperwork ranges from insurance forms to pension applications. Devise an organizational system you can follow, or ask another family member to help with the endless paperwork.

5. Most Caregiving Duties Involve Helping with Basic Tasks

Over the course of caregiving, caregivers spend way more time helping their loved ones with daily tasks than they do making life-altering decisions. These activities tend to add up, and you may have to incorporate them into your daily schedule.

Caring for a senior loved one can be rewarding, but it can also be overwhelming for family caregivers who have other responsibilities they need to focus on. For these families, the perfect solution is respite care. Folsom families rely on our caregivers whenever they need time to rest, work, run errands, and even go on vacation.

6. Caring for a Loved One Can Be Lonely

For caregivers who watch over their senior loved ones 24/7, it’s easy to become isolated from friends. It can be challenging to leave the house when your loved one needs constant supervision. When you’re stressed or tired, spending time with friends may sound exhausting rather than invigorating. Isolation is a real concern for caregivers, and you should work hard to maintain your social circle. Even if you can’t make it to movie night, you can communicate via text, phone, or email. If you’re in desperate need of some socialization, enlist relatives or hire respite care to watch over your loved one while you’re out.

If you are the primary family caregiver for an elderly loved one and need additional assistance providing high-quality senior home care, Folsom Home Care Assistance can help. We are a leading home care agency committed to changing the way seniors age. Whether your elderly parent needs minor help with daily tasks or extensive 24-hour care, call one of our professional Care Managers at 916.226.3737 today.