Healthy Living

3 Essential Rules For Caregivers To Follow

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As the population ages, the demand for caregivers is on the rise. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of personal care staff will grow by 25% from 2021 to 2031. This rate is believed to be faster than the average for all occupations. Caregivers play a crucial role in ensuring the well-being of those they care for. Are you a caregiver or considering that line of work? Here are a few essential rules you must observe. 

  1. Understand the needs and preferences of the person

Every person is different and has their own unique needs and preferences. That is why you must take the time to get to know the person you are caring for. You can start by understanding their likes, dislikes, and daily routine. This background information can help you provide care tailored to the individual’s needs and preferences. For instance, if the person you care for is elderly and a vegetarian, it would be important to prepare meals that meet their dietary restrictions. If they have mobility issues, it is vital to ensure that their living space is set up to allow them to move around safely and comfortably.

  1. Follow proper infection control and hygiene protocols

As a direct and primary caregiver, you are constantly at risk of contracting and spreading infections. It is, therefore, crucial to follow proper infection control and hygiene protocols. Doing this includes various basic steps, such as washing your hands frequently and using personal protective equipment (PPE) when necessary. Also, properly clean and disinfect equipment and surfaces as often as possible. These steps are crucial, especially if you care for someone with a contagious illness. As a primary caregiver, you must know the right method for cleaning and disinfecting high-touch surfaces like doorknobs, light switches, and so on to help reduce a possible high infection transmission rate. Sometimes, a client will consider suing a nursing home when there is apparent dissatisfaction with your hygiene protocols. In worst-case scenarios, your oversights may have led to a further deterioration of their health. Caregivers want to avoid such situations at all costs, explaining why you always need to be on top of your game.

  1. Communicate effectively

Your role as a caregiver is more than being present to attend to another person’s needs. You must learn to communicate with the person you are caring for and their family and other healthcare professionals. Good communication is essential for effective caregiving. It would help to listen to the person being cared for to understand their concerns and needs. In the event of any change in health status, you should be able to contact the person’s family to update them on your observations. You must have the contact details of the relevant persons who have agreed to be called whenever there is a change in the original care plan. Effective communication is also necessary when you have to provide feedback to the person’s doctor or nurse. Without that, creating the right picture of a health situation can be a real challenge, subsequently impacting any relevant next line of action.

Karla Urwitz
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