Every patient and their care journey are unique. But what do you do when your patient is in constant need of specialized care for their age? In this blog, Avanza Training will give 10 creative and helpful tips to caring for elderly patients for caregivers, nurses, and even family members.
- Communicate clearly and consistently with every member of the elderly patient’s care team
When caring for elderly patients, it’s vital to include all members of their care team in daily and weekly communications to prevent any lapse in care. Sometimes elderly patients can have poor memory or loss of hearing. Hanging a large whiteboard up in a common space to track daily needs is a good way to keep an open and consistent line of communication with others entering the home.
- Be patient
Elderly patients require added patience when caring for them. For unique and successful communication style tips please visit www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/communication-success/201412/how-communicate-difficult-seniors-and-older-adults.
- Find ways to exercise with them daily
Whether it be chair yoga, a short walk around the block, or light arm raises while watching their favorite show, daily exercise is important for elderly patients to improve strength, overall health, and balance.
- Use simple language
Simple and short language when caring for elderly patients can help communicate care plans more successfully and will receive a more positive response. As patients age, they can lose the ability to process information. Simple language will help reduce medical errors and make the aging patient feel more comfortable.
- Create step-by-step instructions for using technology around the home
It is no secret that technology for aging patients may be difficult for them to understand. For using the remote, turning on the TV, or even changing the channel – creating a clear written and laminated instruction sheet will help immensely!
- Be proactive about installing ramps and rails
Installing ramps and rails to assist with mobility can create a sense of independence with aging patients. Check out #4 on this blog from Love to Know on caring for elderly patients, https://seniors.lovetoknow.com/Tips_for_Taking_Care_of_Elderly.
- Create a daily schedule
Scheduling mealtimes, medication times, activities and bathing can oftentimes alleviate stress for elderly patients. This schedule would be a great thing to include on the hung whiteboard listed in tip #1.
- Help them with daily chores, if possible, to keep a sense of independence
In tip #8, when Avanza Training recommends helping with daily chores, it does not always have to be or should be the duty of the caregiver/nurse. But this can be an opportunity to help schedule someone to clean or tidy up. A clean home can reduce the risk of falling and improve the aging patient’s overall wellbeing.
- Ask about their favorite things and try incorporating them in your daily schedule/care routine
Building an emotional rapport with aging patients is important. Including some of their favorite activities into their daily routine is a great way to build a connection and prevent depression or loss in activities they used to enjoy.
- Avoid isolation from social circles
According to an article written by Forbes on caring for older adults it’s important to enable social inclusion. “Create opportunities for your loved one to play an active role in your family and in your community. Isolation can be a major cause of emotional distress for older people.”
If you are looking to become a caregiver for an aging loved one, please visit our page on becoming a CNA and learn how you can get started today!