Common Senior Caregiver Tasks & Essential Supplies to Complete Them
Being a caregiver for a senior is a huge responsibility, and a caregiver may be responsible for partial- or total-care duties. Throughout a given day, caregivers may be doing several different tasks, and each task is based on what the senior needs most at a particular time. How can a caregiver keep track of all the things that should be done? Caregiving professionals recommend creating a caregiving plan that lists everything that needs to be done to properly care for the individual. While tasks can vary greatly among seniors needing assistance, the following tasks are part of many caregivers’ plans.
Managing Prescription Medications
One of the most important jobs of a caregiver is to help seniors with their medication management. Seniors can have anywhere from one to multiple prescriptions to juggle, and the more medications there are, the more critical it is to keep track of them all. Pill bottles usually come with a label that includes dosage instructions. And while the original bottles should be kept for reference, prescription pills are much easier to manage when placed into a pill organizer. These organizers have separate compartments, and the best pill organizers make it easy to organize pills by day of the week, and even time of day.
Helping with Meals
As seniors age, they typically eat less than they used to, and some seniors may lose interest in cooking or not be able to prepare meals for themselves anymore. Some seniors facing mobility issues may be housebound and unable to go out to buy food. Caregivers may be tasked with either preparing meals from scratch, shopping for foods that are easy for seniors to prepare at home, or ordering prepared meals to go from a restaurant or supermarket.
Regardless of how meals are handled, there are kitchen and dining aids that can make a difference in how comfortable both the senior and caregiver are during mealtime. For instance, adult bibs can protect clothing, saving a caregiver from doing laundry too often.
Aiding with Personal Hygiene
Some seniors struggle to keep up with their personal hygiene, and this can pose a health risk. It may fall upon caregivers to make sure the senior in their care takes a bath or shower. Essential bathroom aids include long-handled sponges and brushes and no-rinse cleansing wipes to help make personal hygiene tasks easier.
Incontinence is another sensitive personal hygiene issue that has to be dealt with in certain circumstances. It’s important to discuss what kind of incontinence products the person feels comfortable using. Choices include incontinence pads and briefs as well as incontinence leak protection products for furniture.
Getting around can be tough for seniors experiencing mobility issues. Mobility may be limited due to medical conditions or the weakening of muscles. Many seniors want to be as mobile as possible, even with any limitations they might have.
To help them do this, caregivers can use a wide range of mobility aids. Items that can be kept on hand include portable steps or reaching tools that can grab items from hard-to-reach places. Rollators and walkers are great for assisting seniors who just need a little extra support in order to go out and be active.