New family caregivers often encounter many learning experiences when they first take on the responsibilities involved with caring for their senior loved ones. While caregiving experiences are often positive, there are also some that arise from common mistakes that should be avoided. Be aware of mistakes new caregivers tend to make so you can prevent potential issues down the road.
1. Hiding Information about a Diagnosis
Health issues frequently arise during the senior years that may be difficult to accept, and it’s natural to want to protect the people around your loved one from bad news. For instance, you may try to hide information about your loved one’s dementia diagnosis to prevent other family members from worrying. However, you should be open about the issues your loved one is facing so others can find ways to help.
If your elderly loved one is living with a serious medical condition and needs help managing the tasks of daily living, reach out to Home Care Assistance, an at-home care agency you can trust. Our caregivers are available 24/7, there are no hidden fees in our contracts, and we offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee on all of our in-home care services.
2. Taking on Caregiving Duties without Understanding the Full Picture
The news that your loved one needs help may instantly generate a desire to jump in and address all of his or her health concerns. After all, you would do anything to see your loved one happy. However, many age-related issues are more complicated than they appear to be at first glance. For instance, severe vision loss may mean your loved one can no longer drive, and taking him or her to and from appointments could fill the majority of your day. Find out exactly what you should expect with each new diagnosis so you can arrange for the right type of care to meet your loved one’s needs.
3. Ignoring Your Own Health Concerns
When there’s so much to do each day, you may begin to ignore your own health. Trying to work through constant pain or an illness could cause you to experience a major decrease in your health. Make time to go to your doctor’s appointments, and establish a backup plan for times when you need to tend to your needs. For instance, you could hire a respite caregiver to step in on days when you need to recover from an illness or injury.
Whether you need respite from your caregiving duties or your aging loved one needs live-in care, Oakville, Ontario, Home Care Assistance can meet your family’s care needs. Our dedicated caregivers are available around the clock to provide transportation to doctor’s appointments, ensure seniors take their prescribed medications, and help with a variety of tasks in and outside the home.
4. Promising to Do Everything Yourself
To offer reassurance, you may tell your loved one you’ll never leave his or her side. While your intentions are noble, your loved one can benefit from having multiple people provide assistance. Seeing new faces each day gives your loved one a chance to socialize, and you can learn new care strategies from other experienced caregivers.
5. Failing to Communicate with Other Caregivers
Teamwork relies upon communication, and you should never assume other people know what you’re thinking. Start a care journal and medication log you can use to communicate with other members of your loved one’s support team. Then establish a preferred method for communication, such as group chats or emails, to keep everyone up to date.
6. Forgetting to Plan for the Future
No one wants to think of the worst-case scenario. However, your loved one may eventually require extensive care and support. Plan now for your loved one’s future needs, and prepare for emergency situations. You should have a care plan in place for long-term diagnoses, such as Alzheimer’s disease, that takes into account the different needs that could arise throughout each stage.
One of the most common mistakes family caregivers make is failing to consider professional in-home care. There are many reasons seniors might need assistance at home. Some may require regular mental stimulation due to an Alzheimer’s diagnosis, while others might only need part-time assistance with exercise and basic household tasks. Home Care Assistance is a leading Oakville homecare services provider. Families rely on our expertly trained caregivers to help their senior loved ones maintain a high quality of life. Call one of our friendly Care Managers at (905) 337-1200 to learn about ways our experienced caregivers can help your loved one.