When you employ a caregiver for yourself or an elderly loved one, you can expect their duties to include:
1. Determine medical requirements
Checking on the health of your senior loved one is an important caregiver responsibility. You may be required to assist in assessing pain levels, scheduling medical appointments, and managing medications and chronic conditions. It's a good idea to talk about your loved one's health with their doctor and other medical professionals on a regular basis.
2. Make a care plan
When you begin your caregiving journey, creating a care plan that addresses your senior loved one's care needs and goals can be beneficial. A plan can assist you in determining how many daily hours of care your loved one will require, as well as whether you will require additional assistance to ensure their health and safety.
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3. Assist with basic necessities
Activities of daily living (ADLs) such as eating, bathing, grooming, and toileting can be difficult to perform without the assistance of a caregiver due to memory and mobility issues. Check in frequently and pay attention to specific signs and changes to determine if your loved one requires additional assistance.
4. Offer companionship
Companionship is an important but often overlooked aspect of senior caregiving. Loneliness in older people can have serious health consequences, including depression. Caring for an aging loved one provides opportunities to strengthen your bond and connection.
5. Assist with housekeeping
Maintaining a home can become increasingly difficult as your loved one ages. Older adults may require assistance with tasks such as vacuuming, dishwashing, and garbage disposal. Even with your assistance, yard work such as snow shoveling and daily maintenance may be too much for your loved one to handle if they live in a house. Consider whether your loved one would benefit from the convenience and support that a senior living community can provide.
6. Keep track of medications
To treat chronic conditions, older adults frequently take multiple prescription medications. Your loved one may require assistance in keeping track of their medication list, comprehending drug interactions, and taking prescribed dosages on time. You can help reduce your loved one's risk of medication errors and related health problems by monitoring their medications and setting up reminder systems.
7. Review your care plan on a regular basis.
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The care plan will need to be adjusted as the circumstances surrounding you and your loved one change. Examine your caregiver duties list on a regular basis to see what is working, what isn't, and what needs to be changed. Maintain regular contact with your loved one's doctor and other health care providers to discuss any changes.
8. Make meals
With age, food preparation can become more difficult. Your loved one may lack the energy or motivation to cook if they live alone. Cooking can be dangerous in some cases due to memory and balance issues. As a caregiver, you can assist with grocery shopping, meal preparation, or finding alternatives to ensure your loved one receives proper nutrition.
9. Assist with mobility and transfer.
Falls pose a significant risk to the health of older adults. Your loved one may have difficulty moving or transferring — for example, from their bed in the morning to a chair in the afternoon. As a caregiver, you can help your loved one stay safe and comfortable by taking steps to prevent falls.
10. Make transportation available
As your loved one grows older, taking public transportation or driving may no longer be safe options. To get your loved one to doctor's appointments and other activities, you may need to look into senior transportation options.
If you believe you need additional assistance caring for an aging loved one or believe they would benefit from a senior living community, contact one of A Place for Mom's Senior Living Advisors today to learn more about what you can do to ensure your loved one receives the care they deserve.