Caregiver traits for Alzheimer’s Care
6 Traits Every Caregiver Should Possess for Stellar Alzheimer’s In-Home Care
Even though it is one of the most emotionally rewarding careers out there, being an Alzheimer’s caregiver is also one of the most difficult. Alzheimer’s inhome care is definitely not for the faint of heart, and can certainly not be performed by just anybody. It requires a special set of talents and personality traits to ensure that the patient feels valued, respected, and dignified:
Perhaps the most important trait for an Alzheimer’s caregiver is empathy. It is only when caregivers can put themselves in their patient’s position that they can truly give the best care. When empathy is present, the caregiver realizes that the patient, even though not always cohesive, is still a person with feelings. Empathy ensures the patient will be treated with kindness and dignity no matter how difficult the situation is.
When someone is receiving Alzheimer’s in-home care, that person is often relying on his or her caregiver for everything from eating to dressing to using the restroom. Clearly, it’s important that the patient can rely on the caregiver to be there when needed. But the patient is not the only person who needs someone dependable; the patient’s family does, too. Family members need to know that an episode of dementia will be handled according to their wishes and that their loved one will always be taken care of when they are not home.
One important thing that every Alzheimer’s in-home caregiver knows is that the disease is anything but predictable. An ideal caregiver is able to roll with the punches, willing to work long hours, and knows that things are always going to come up when they are the least expected.
It is no secret that impaired functioning is a major symptom of Alzheimer’s, affecting both the body and mind. While a caregiver can always just do everything for the patient, this is not beneficial to anyone. That’s why patience is crucial for successful Alzheimer’s in-home care. A stellar caregiver lets patients accomplish as many things for themselves as possible, even if it means waiting an extraordinarily long time. They also give patients ample time to conjure up an answer after a question is asked (which can take a minute or longer).
The last thing an Alzheimer’s patient needs is to feel like a burden. However, if a caregiver is constantly complaining or making negative comments, that is exactly how the patient will feel. A caregiver needs to be able to always see the bright side of a situation, and if the caregiver does have negative thoughts, she or he must be able to keep them inside.
Finally, the perfect caregiver for Alzheimer’s in-home care needs to have strength. Of course, physical strength is a requirement, since patients often need help to move, bathe, and dress, but more important, caregivers must possess emotional strength—strength to get through the tough times and strength to know when it’s okay to ask for help or take a step back.
When the above traits can be found in one individual (like the talented caregivers at Fairfield Family Care), your loved ones will receive the Alzheimer’s in-home care they deserve.