Everyone knows that getting more informed about a subject is never a bad thing, right? Making more money and getting better quality jobs are the most obvious reasons why to invest in your education as a caregiver. But, caring for an elderly person involves knowledge about many subjects.
Being prepared for emergencies can mean the difference between life or death. Knowing the signs of certain diseases before they get out of control is critical to responsible care. Being able to handle the many demands placed upon a caregivers shoulders day in and day out can make a tough situation more enjoyable, rewarding and less stressful for everyone concerned.
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THE TOP TEN REASONS TO BECOME A CERTIFIED CAREGIVER
1) Are you well versed in elderly nutrition and dietary needs and how they change over time? It can make an enormous difference in disease control for the heart, blood pressure, stroke, dementia, blood sugar; and for healing and maintaining all-important vision as we age. The elderly like to snack, but on what? Or they may enjoy good old comfort food, but did you know that some might be okay, but certain comfort foods can be surprisingly unhealthy for us.
2) Are you confident about what to do in any caregiving crisis? It is true that sometimes a sudden crisis may occur that catapults you into a series of unexpected events. Perhaps certain conditions have been gradual, but now have become real problems. We need to somehow cope. There may be many new questions — What type of housing do you or your elderly loved one need? What kind of elderly assistance is best in your situation — should you care for elderly at home? What are the fundamentals and expert techniques of caregiving, and where do you get quality home healthcare information? What about assisted living or day care for seniors?
3) Do you know how to handle the stress of caregiving? Do you know how to help an elderly person deal with stress in a variety of natural and gentle ways? Caregivers are legendary for the amount of stress they have to cope with over long periods of time. As we know, our attitude and thinking are of utmost importance, as they can impact the very chemistry and physiology of our brains and moods, and thus our health. It makes all the difference in the world to keep stress at a minimum level.
4) Are you able to identify the onset of common health issues that affect the elderly? Your loved one’s clock is ticking and “waiting awhile” could trigger a crisis with an elderly person. A senior’s vision issues, for instance, may be the result of dreaded macular degeneration. There are treatments now that can halt its progress, but they must not be delayed. Waiting might cause irreparable damage. Likewise, stroke symptoms also resemble those of other conditions- they must be tended to immediately.
5) Do you know how to responsibly and legally handle another person’s end of life healthcare, legal and financial obligations? Do you know how to avoid accusations of elder abuse or neglect?
There are a wide range of laws regarding the elderly and how to assist them in handling their finances – a niche called elder law. Lawyers who specialize in elder law assist with matters affecting the autonomy of elderly people, especially personal and financial matters. The specifics of wills, trusts, healthcare directives, power of attorney, to name a few, are included. If you are someone’s caregiver, you need to know what you are doing along these lines.
6) Do you know how to be a health care advocate? When you have medical questions, insurance disputes, questions about coverage, or have been denied access for a certain medical procedure do you know how to bring together the talents of doctors, nurses, lawyers, insurance specialists, social workers and healthcare policy and ethics professionals to make sure your loved one gets the best healthcare possible? Family Caregivers have to be medical advocates.
7) Do you need to feel confident that you can handle almost any caregiving challenge that will come up?
The fact is. self-confidence is often a more important asset than skill, knowledge, or even experience. It’s the impression you make. Your credentials may be impressive, but if your body language or demeanor gives any indication of uncertainty, others will pick up on that.
People have a natural tendency to trust you more when you seem confident. To the subconscious mind confidence equals competence. Does that seem unfair? Well ask yourself if you would hire someone who seemed unsure of their own abilities? Confidence creates trust, and everyone wants to be able to trust the people they do business with or have to rely on. If you want to be trusted by others, you must first trust yourself. To project trustworthiness you must project confidence. To feel honestly confident you must know your stuff.
8) Do you want others to feel you can REALLY be trusted to know what to do on an ongoing basis for your loved one or client? Who would you trust more, all things being equal, a sweet caregiver or a sweet certified caregiver?
9) Is a career in caregiving something you might consider? Certifications are becoming more important than ever, with reasonably priced quality certifications available online and more companies willing to pay for their employees to become certified, (especially if the certification exam can be bundled with education and ongoing professional association).
Three types of certifications are important to get:
1. Get certified for comprehensive elder care through Google #1 ranked CertifiedCare.org
2. Get a caregiver certification in a specialty area, such as Alzheimer’s and Dementia or Special Needs senior care, that will separate you from the pack and allow your services to be useful for the life of your client or loved one
3. Get a certification that allows you to create a second income in this growing field. For example, experienced and certified caregivers are eligible to become Certified Senior Care Auditors
10) Do you know what the hundreds of tips and tricks utilized by professional caregivers are that can make your experience easier and better for everyone involved?
- It only takes a few hours to learn skills you can put to use for a lifetime.
- These skills just might help you improve or save a life.
- What we have described here is just the top of the tip of the iceberg.
We believe it is important to raise people’s awareness about the realities of caregiving – how much is expected from a caregiver and how much elders need help from people who know what they are doing.
We provide this blog as a public service. This is our way of living the Golden Rule. As people worldwide are increasingly living past 100 the need for senior care assistants will continue to grow.
We all want and need someone to care well for us when we are old. Learning the information mentioned above is a smart investment in the future.
Change your life- or encourage someone else to change theirs!
Make life easier by becoming a Certified Personal Care Aide