11 Traits That Make An Excellent Houston Caregiver
Caregiving is one of the most demanding jobs in the world today. While caregivers do a fantastic job of taking care of patients and seniors, this job isn’t everyone’s piece of cake. These professionals possess unique qualities and skills that enable them to handle all the pressures and demands that come with the job. Outlined below are some of the traits that make a great caregiver.
The level of empathy that caregivers have is unmeasurable. They are capable of tuning in to the other person’s pain and look for possible solutions to alleviate it. A caregiver will often be tasked with helping patients suffering from various conditions including Alzheimer’s and dementia, as well as those recovering from painful surgery. Unless one is compassionate enough, he/she wouldn’t be able to handle such patients, one of the reasons compassion is the first thing clients look for when hiring a caregiver.
This is one of the must-have qualities for one to be successful as a caregiver. He/she must not only be able to communicate through writing and verbally, but non-verbally as well. While the caregiver may have to update family members about the patient’s well-being, the exceptional communication skills make it easy for them to connect with the patient. Connecting with a patient, especially those suffering from dementia and memory loss, can be particularly hard for many. A good caregiver will only need a few moments with the patient to connect. These communication skills are also required especially when one has to interact with medical professionals, nurses, doctors, and family members alike.
A good caregiver is always aware of his/her surroundings and can notice even the slightest change in behavior or condition with those around. Simply connecting and talking with your patients isn’t enough to make you an excellent caregiver. Some patients will be secretive enough to hide what they feel by wearing a fake smile. A good caregiver will take note of the slightest change in behavior even when the patient tries to hide it. These professionals have a sharp/keen eye to detail; hence will help prevent an accident or disaster before it happens. They will also be the first persons to contact a doctor if anything seems out of the ordinary.
4. Interpersonal Skills
While you certainly don’t have to be an extrovert to succeed as a caregiver, you sure need to be able to interact with people freely. This is because you will meet and interact with hundreds of people throughout your career, and possibly many more in the future. Excellent social skills are needed for one to be able to establish rapport and trust with both the clients and the patient. Some conditions may make a patient feel isolated or neglected, hence build a ‘wall’ around themselves. You’d have a hard time breaking the barrier if you didn’t have excellent interpersonal skills.
5. Time Management
Most caregivers work under minimal supervision despite working for a caregiver agency. Time management is, therefore, a trait one must have to be able to get everything done in his/her shift. This means planning well for various tasks, working efficiently, and knowing when and how to handle chores that come with each job. Many are the times when a caregiver will hardly have his/her own time. It is, however, with proper time management that he/she can get time for his/her family.
You need to be organized to make it as a caregiver. Emergencies arise all the time. You need to be prepared all the time by having everything in your nursing bag. Organizational skills are put to the test when one has to attend to more than one patient and with different needs.
You, the caregiver, may be tasked with keeping the home/space clean by doing a little laundry and moping during your visits. This comes standard when taking care of the elderly. While you might not be particularly neat/clean at your home, you should be able to keep the patient’s house as clean as possible during your shift. Your client might also need help bathing and getting dressed too. Good personal hygiene is mandatory for all caregivers.
You’ll face patients with different needs and challenges, all of which you should be able to handle well. Some patients may be irrational, criticize everything you say or do, have limited communication abilities, or suffer both physical and mental ailments. Unless you are a patient person, some of these situations/conditions will lead to frustration. Whatever the problem there is, you need to remain as calm as possible since the patient will be looking up to you.
Every patient’s needs are unique. In addition to this, the patient’s condition may change in one way or the other. If this happens, you should be able to make necessary adjustments to accommodate each need as it arises. A flexible mindset and time will make your work much easier and comfortable as a caregiver. It is also worth noting that your caregiving shift might or might not start at 8 and end at 5; timelines will change according to need.
As mentioned earlier, caregivers work unsupervised for the better part of their careers. Although you are required to follow the doctor’s instructions to the letter, many are the times when no doctor or nurse will be around to attend to the patient. You, therefore, need to make proactive and informed decisions in case of an emergency. Such decisions can be the difference between saving the patient and losing him/her.
11. Stamina & Physical Strength
In addition to caring for the patient, you’ll be required to take on various tasks, including vacuuming the carpets, carrying groceries, and even lifting the patient. Depending on your patient, there are times when you’ll spend the entire day on your feet. It is for this reason you should always have comfortable shoes on, and be physically fit. Some of these chores can be draining for an unfit person.
Are you looking for just the right caregiver to take care of your loved one? We have a team of well-trained professionals ready to handle any caregiving need you might have. You can be sure to trust our caregivers too. They undergo a thorough series of screening and training before one can be allowed to join the ream. We are also bonded, insured, and registered.
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