As a new caregiver, you have decided to take on the task of looking after a loved one. Although your intentions are pure, it’s common to make some mistakes in the beginning. Learning how to be a caregiver can be challenging, but recognizing these errors early and learning from them can help you provide your loved one with the best possible support. Here, Serenity Home Care discusses some of the top mistakes new caregivers make and offers some ways they can be avoided.
Overlooking New Health Issues
You may be caring for a loved one because they have a debilitating health condition that requires constant assistance. However, it is not uncommon for your loved one to develop another health concern while in your care. There isn’t necessarily anything you did wrong, as some health issues are a natural part of the aging process. As your loved one’s caregiver, it is up to you to recognize new health issues as they arise and address them before they progress. Without the proper training and education, doing so may be difficult.
One way to avoid this common mistake is by hiring trained caregivers. They not only provide compassionate assistance to each individual, but they also possess the proper knowledge to provide quality nursing services. They can assess your loved one’s health and monitor their status to ensure all possible concerns are addressed. They can also assist with medication management.
Neglecting Your Own Health Needs
When caring for a loved one, it is natural to put their wellbeing first and set your needs aside. This is especially true if a loved one is unable to move comfortably on their own. You may be tasked with performing physical duties, such as:
- Lifting your loved one in and out of bed
- Assisting your loved one in and out of the bathtub
- Performing housekeeping chores around the home
Taking on these physical duties may negatively affect your own health. It’s important to remember that your wellbeing is just as important as theirs.
To avoid this common pitfall, families often rely on professional home care services. The assistance they provide can not only improve the quality of life of your loved one but you, as well. Through these services, you can expect them to handle several duties, allowing you to focus on your loved one in ways that work best for both of you.
Being Unaware Of A Loved One’s Discomfort
As a new caregiver, it is not only important to be aware of your loved one’s physical health, but also their emotional wellbeing and personal preferences. It may be difficult for some aging adults to accept the fact they need assistance. This can lead to conflict and feelings of discomfort, especially when it comes to personal-care tasks. Your loved one may be more inclined to accept assistance from a professional during this time. The professionals who specialize in personal care and related services can give your loved one the compassionate, attentive assistance they need in ways that are most comfortable for them.
Disregarding The Warning Signs Of Burnout
For some caregivers, looking after a family member can be a full-time job. If your loved one is highly dependent, it can be easy to disregard your personal life and fall victim to burnout. Caregiver stress and burnout can result in a host of mental and emotional issues that may affect your caregiving abilities and other areas of your life.
New caregivers can balance their duties and personal life with the help of a home care agency. By allowing professional caregivers to assist your loved one, you are able to take the time to focus on yourself whenever you need it.
Not Asking For Help Soon Enough
Many new caregivers believe taking care of a parent or relative is their family obligation. While helping family is very important, it does not mean you need to take on this duty alone. New caregivers in Oregon can call upon the professional services of Serenity Home Care. Our dedicated staff possesses the knowledge and expertise to offer exceptional care to your loved one in partnership with you.
Licensed by the Oregon Health Authority, Serenity Home Care provides a comprehensive range of services to clients in Multnomah, Clackamas, and Washington Counties. To avoid common caregiving mistakes and to learn more about our services, contact us today.