When you care for others, whether as a professional caregiver or as an informal caregiver, sometimes your own care becomes a secondary concern. If you’ve ever taken a plane somewhere, you know that part of the safety presentation is that if oxygen masks are needed that you should put on your own mask before helping someone else. But when it comes to regular caregiving, we sometimes forget to put on our “oxygen masks” – that is, to make sure that we’re doing the things that we need to do to take care of ourselves.
You’ve probably read a thousand different articles that tell you how to take time for yourself, but who has the time to really focus on yourself when you have so many other things to worry about? Whether you are an Adult Family Home Coordinator, a family member caring for a loved one, or an experienced Assisted Living Facility staff member, you know that focusing your attention on someone else’s care often means letting your self-care slip a little. After all, when you prioritize others, either professionally or personally, your own needs often go unmet.
Sometimes you have a resident who just doesn’t want to admit that they’re having an issue with incontinence. While they may not want to discuss what they consider a private or personal matter with you, as an Adult Family Home provider, your resident’s care and comfort is a paramount concern for you to say nothing of the time and effort that cleanup can take. Talking to someone about incontinence care can be awkward, even for seasoned professional caregivers who have discussed health issues of all sorts with their residents. Here are three simple tips to help get the conversation going if you feel stuck.