When considering the nursing home option for parents or other loved ones, here are a few of the main advantages to keep to mind:
Better resources and equipment: Private homes simply don’t have the types of medical equipment and supplies needed to help seniors stay healthy. Many nursing homes are almost as advanced as hospitals in their ability to provide sophisticated care for patients on a 24-hour basis.
High-quality long-term care: Due to modern medicine, seniors now live longer than ever. While we’re thankful for this, longer life-spans often come with longer periods of late-life illness and disability. Caring for a senior relative at home is often a long-term commitment of many years, sometimes requiring intensive care.
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Moving through the caregiving world with grace and ease is no simple skill. However, having good manners will carry you a long way.As a caregiver we spend our day interacting with family members, friends, and everyone on the Care Team.
Common sense tells you that the people you are closest to warrant an extra measure of consideration. It takes good manners to sustain the love and respect between caregiver and care-receiver.
1. Encourage family members and friends to show respect and deference to the care-receiver. For example, the care-receiver's visitors should be treated politely as honored guests.
Noise from the TV, radio, etc., should be kept to a minimum. The care-receiver's rest hour should be respected. Telephone messages should be carefully taken, and mail given to him/her unopened.
2. Preserve the care-receiver's feelings of independence. It is important that the care-receiver have control of her/his own money-as long as she/he is capable of managing it.
3. Use your imagination and put yourself in the care-receiver' shoes. Be understanding and find a way to harness your frustrations.
4. Focus on the care-receiver's needs and not your own. Talk to your parent. Try to understand how he/she sees it.
5. Let go of unreasonable hopes. Recognize that your parent won't or can't change.
6. Express warmth and concern toward the care-receiver. This is especially important when the care-receiver has a poor self-image and many feelings of inferiority. A good caregiver must provide reassurance.
7. Be a good listener. Many times the care-receiver may simply want you to listen.
8. Smile a lot. Be a good friend and companion.
9. Keep confidences. Avoid repeating matters that will not be welcomed by others.
10. Maintain your self-composure and avoid stress. Practice your coping skills in order to maintain your composure and balance.
1. Don't treat your parent like a child. Even if your parent reverts to childlike behavior, he/she always needs to be treated with respect and dignity.
As the parent's dependence increases, it is natural for adult children to find themselves unable to communicate in familiar ways.
2. Don't criticize the care-receiver for occasional forgetfulness and other signs of growing older.
3. Don't take sides with other family members in disputes or arguments. It is better to be known as someone who is fair and noninterfering.
4. Don't let an angry situation become emotionally or physically abusive. Step out of the room for a cool down. Seek outside help.
5. Don't neglect the care-receiver. Make sure your parent gets to all appointments, takes medications as scheduled.
6. Don't discourage the help of others. There can never be too much help.
7. Don't assume that the care-receiver has nothing to contribute.
8. Don't compare what you are doing to what everyone else is doing. Every job in a caregiving situation is important.
9. Don't underestimate the power of touch. As people age or their illness progresses, there is less human contact. A hug, kiss or pat on the shoulder can enhance the situation.
10. Don't treat your parent/family member like an alien. When there are several persons in the room be sure to include the care-receiver in the conversation. Do not talk about him/her in the third person as if he/she wasn't in the room.
A good caregiver is genuine and cares about the dignity, welfare, and feelings of their care-receiver. Good manners are based on good character, which translates to kindness and compassion.
Putting an Elderly Parent in a Nursing Home
Older people might not develop diseases such as osteoporosis, arthritis and similar, however these conditions are easier developed by the senior population than by the younger among us. Sadly they are higher risk people and the caregiver has the obligation to help them reduce these risks whenever possible.
It is important that the home is a safe haven for the seniors. Falling anywhere in the home can happen easily so reducing the risks of them having an accident is important. When the person is leaving their home or returning back, particular care needs to be taken with curbs and slippery areas. Most of the injuries though happen at home, so this is why it is important for the caregiver or the family to ensure proper safety as well as making the room easily accessible.
Stairs are usually high risk for elderly simply because the older a person gets, the more difficult it becomes to go up or down the stairs due to arthritis and the inability of bending the knees as one used to do. Stairs can be poorly lit which makes them even more dangerous. In some places installing a stair lift should solve many of the problems that staircases present to the seniors. However having proper lit stairways is important as well regardless whether there is a lift or not in the house.
Proper lighting is useful in the entire home, not only around the stairs. Various corridors and tighter areas should have small lamps for ensuring that there are no dark areas in the home. Many people install sensor lights whereby the light will turn on anytime there is motion around the area. After a few minutes the light turns off automatically, which makes sure that there are no high electricity bills running due to leaving the light on all day and night.
The bathroom is another room in the house that needs special handling when a senior citizen is living there. Proper lighting gives an additional layer of safety in the bathroom. The place should be well lit and light switches should be easily accessible upon entrance.
As the bathroom floor tends to be slippery by nature due to the water splashed, regular carpet mats should be replaced with non-slip mats that do not move and slide around. Sometimes commercial mats such as those used in the kitchen can work quite well too. Also adding grabbing bars next to the toilet, sink area, as well as the shower is a great idea and will enhance the safety of the person using the bathroom. Even towel bars could be replaced by grab bars for added security.
Finally adding wide non-skid tape to high-risk places, such staircases, curb areas and bathroom floors makes the home additionally safe for elderly, and not to forget small children, who are very easy to fall and bruise as well.