Understanding the Caregiver Role

Understanding the Caregiver Role

When someone unexpectedly becomes ill in your family, you might get thrown into the role of caregiver. Even if your loved one gets put in a hospice, he or she should still have a primary family caregiver. The hospice can provide guidance and support, but nothing can compare to the love they will receive from family members. Caregivers are typically spouses, adult children or trusted friends. If you don’t have any medical training, being a caregiver might be more difficult. How do you effectively fulfill the role as a caregiver?

Keep a journal

Write everything down in a journal. Write down names of nurses, lab results, appointments, medication, etc. Any information that is vital for the patient, keep it recorded. This way, you can efficiently keep track of everything. Instead of trying to remember what the doctor said, it will already be written down so you won’t forget. This will ultimately keep you sane, as you could easily drive yourself crazy trying to remember every little detail.

Be patient

When someone is ill and in need of a caregiver, it means they can’t be fully independent and self-sufficient. Your loved one will likely be frustrated, which can lead to lashing out. No matter what illness your loved one is suffering from, you need to be patient with them. They are in a horrible situation and being angry right back at them could make things worse. You shouldn’t take anything personally. As it’s simply the illness talking.

Be realistic

Depending on the severity of the illness, your loved one might not be able to perform simple tasks. You need to understand their physical limitations and design the proper environment around them. If they are paralyzed from the waist down, convert the house to be wheelchair accessible. This can reduce stress for the both of you. If your loved one is still capable of doing some things on their own, encourage them. Don’t do something for them if they are able to do it themselves, this will limit their recovery.

Have a strong constitution

Some of things you might have to help with won’t be very pleasant. Often times, caregivers have to deal with bodily fluids, wound care, bathing and other personal hygiene routines. If your loved one is staying in a hospice, nurses can take care of these matters. But if your loved one is staying at home, the nurse won’t always be there. This is an awkward situation for both the caregiver and the patient, but it is important that you help without shaming your loved one.

Be reliable

You need to be available to help your loved one whenever they need it. They are sick, can’t do much for themselves, and are relying on you to get their medication or rides to doctor appointments. It is imperative that you are always on time and not slacking on any of your responsibilities. If something isn’t done properly, it could cost your loved one’s life.
If you do decide to place your love one in a hospice, ProCare Hospice of Nevada may be the right choose. The nurses and staff are dedicated to providing comfort and support to all the patients. They strive to give patients the best experience possible. For more information about Las Vegas hospice services, contact 702.380.8300.

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