Study Shines Light on Top Family Caregiving Fears: What if I Make a Mistake?
“Of course Dad can move in with me!”
Increasingly, more family members are making this commendable decision on a daily basis, signifying the start of lifestyle changes they can only fully gain an understanding of once immersed in them. And even though the rewards of family caregiving are immeasurable, it’s a role that is not without its struggles and challenges.
It may seem natural to manage everyday activities for a loved one; but it’s not as instinctive as it seems on first impression. For example, helping a loved one into the shower or bath incorrectly may lead to a fall. Inadequate incontinence care could cause skin damage and infection. Non-compliance with a recommended nutritional plan can bring about an array of health problems.
It’s not a surprise that in a recent report provided by AARP, “Home Alone Revisited,” a lot of family caregivers reported pressure regarding the prospect of making an error in the care they provide. The study highlights responses from a study sent to over 2,000 family caregivers, who revealed that even though they believed their caregiving was enabling their family members to stay in the home over a move to an assisted living or nursing home environment, they expressed worry over their competency to perform the tasks required.
Respondents in the survey identified that the most emotionally frustrating facet of caregiving is incontinence care. And, approximately ¾ of family caregivers surveyed are consistently performing medical tasks in relation to pain management – responsibilities for which they wished they’d obtained better training and recommendations from the senior’s health care team.
Heather Young, Dean Emerita at the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at the University of California, Davis (and co-author of the report) explains that, “Too often (family caregivers) are unprepared and do not get the support they need to assume these important roles.”
Asking for guidance and training in new tasks is a must for family caregivers. Those who partner with a knowledgeable in-home care provider, like Hired Hands Homecare, can decrease the trepidation and uncertainty in managing care in the home successfully. Our caregivers are fully trained in the countless complexities of aging care, and can provide family caregivers with valuable guidance and education. We also offer safe, reliable respite care services that make it possible for family caregivers to step back from their care responsibilities while knowing their elder family member will be safe and well cared for.