Once an elderly person needs regular assistance, anyone providing home care service will need to build a connection with their client. The process of accepting help can be very challenging for some seniors, and service providers need to be ready to build a relationship with that person.
Learn Their Routine
Many seniors have gotten up early for years, so working with service providers who work particular hours may be a challenge. The thing that any home service provider must remember is that change is difficult for anyone, but particularly challenging for aging brains.
Loss of plasticity may lead to some seniors being very stuck in their ways. Introducing change must be done gradually, lest the senior client feel that everything in their lives is about to be disrupted.
If you’re hired to help the senior bathe and dress, for example, make sure you tell them exactly what you’re doing and when. Physical challenges in old age may include limited vision and hearing, so be prepared to repeat things or speak more loudly than usual.
This may make you feel as though you’re treating the client as a child. If the client points this out, you can ease up on the explanations. However, most clients will respond better to too much information than to be startled by something you do or say.
Take Mental Pictures
For home care service providers who are hired to provide cleaning and laundry services as well as personal care, take mental pictures of how the client likes their home set up. Make sure that cushions are in their proper place, and that kitchen things are put away where they expect them to be.
Again, change can be very hard. Do your best as a service provider to not introduce more changes than are absolutely necessary for the safety and well-being of your client.
Build A Relationship
Carry pictures of your family members and, if the situation warrants, share these photos. You and your client will be spending a lot of time together, so sharing your personal life with them will help build a friendship.
If your client has memory issues or struggles to remember words and names, talking about your family can help them learn new things and build new neural pathways.
Be Ready to Travel
You may find that part of your job is to provide transportation for your client. In addition to errands and appointments, try to schedule in a fun event for your client. If your client enjoyed going to the museum or to a particular restaurant, try to make time for a stop at these places.
Losing the ability to drive is devastating for many seniors. You can provide them with a restored sense of freedom and autonomy.
After speaking with many home care agencies (such as Assisting Hands in Boca Raton) in researching this article, on thing became clear. Providing home care includes helping the client feel at home and stable in their space. By respectfully providing the help they need, you can make their later years much more secure.