Are you considering a career working with elderly people? Have you always wanted to be a geriatric nurse, but want some experience before you begin professional nursing training?
If so, you may have wondered exactly what is needed to be a successful and effective elderly carer. This is an area of care that is expanding as the population gets older and, as such, it is an area where there is a lot of focus on the level of care and the dedication of the staff.
With that in mind, what are the main skills or traits that you will need to work as a successful (and happy) carer for those in their golden years? Read on to find out.
Most nursing homes or supported living facilities press the importance of compassion in their staff, and there is a reason why. Those who are older are more likely to be suffering from issues relating to their memory and their mobility (or both), and this will require a level of compassion that many people may be unfamiliar with. So, when you start searching online for a retirement home near me hiring, be sure that you have a level of compassion that can be built on by this line of work, not tested to the brink by it.
In all areas of care work, you must be respectful of those you are caring for. This applies to all areas of their lives, such as respecting their privacy, respecting their decisions, and respecting the wants of their families. This can be challenging when their values do not align with yours, but it is your place to care for them, not judge them.
Most people have at one time in their life met a nurse, doctor, or another medical professional who was about as friendly as a dog with a toothache. To be successful in care, especially elderly care, trust between you and those that you care for must be built. You will have a better chance of developing this trust if you are friendly and approachable. Remember, elderly people who are in nursing care are vulnerable adults and are not likely to want to engage with someone who is having a bad day.
Working in elderly care, you are going to be dealing with people who have issues with their memory every day. A bit of patience is needed to cope in this line of work. Yes, you may have met Mrs Smith yesterday, and yes, you may have told her your name is Judy, but you need to be aware that today, she may not remember who you are. Do not get upset, but aim to widen your knowledge of dementia or the illness that she is suffering from to help with better communication and potentially memory jogging.
Older people who have mobility issues or memory issues are going to be reliant on you for their movement, their daily routine, and their daily life. Thus, they must know that they can depend on you. If you feel that you are dependable, and know you have a passion for the elderly, then start looking for your dream job in care today.