Currently, Canada has a rapidly aging population which will require care and support in the years to come. Elder care, while often stigmatized as “boring”, can be a rewarding career option. The serenity and calm the occupation provides, coupled with the immediate positive impact that attentive care brings into an elder’s lives can be enticing aspects of the profession for those suited for it. Over the years, countless myths and stereotypes have been spread about this emerging industry (and the people it serves!). We are here to bring clarity and dispel some of the more outlandish claims that have been made about elder care.
Elder care is "boring"
While the job may not be particularly suited to the typical type-A, high energy folks who require constant action to remain involved in their work, elder care remains an occupation that is anything but boring. The opportunity to learn from our society’s most senior citizens, get their insights on the world, and learn from them is certainly an alluring prospect for health care aides. Furthermore, many seniors remain very active, often participating in recreational sport leagues and attending fitness classes on a regular basis. Besides, who doesn’t love bingo?
We are long past the days of “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up”
Despite immediate emergencies remaining a constant threat for seniors still living in their own homes, the elderly population today is presented with a much more complex set of challenges to handle. As technology continuously advances, homes have become much more intricate environments, requiring expertise and knowledge to be navigated effectively. Seemingly simple appliances like stove ovens, refrigerators, or even washer and dryer sets have become awfully complex, often leaving elderly users confused and perplexed in their attempts to operate them.
The elderly is “low-tech”
While this remark partly contradicts the previous observation made, there has been a definite and gradual rise in the use of what can be considered “high-tech” by the elderly. Social media networks, once seen as the vanguard of technological advancement, are now surprisingly popular among seniors: According to Pew Research Centre, 62% of all online adults over 65 years of age use Facebook daily. Furthermore, several services, such as Senior Planet Exploration Centre, have emerged with the mission to teach older adults how to become more comfortable navigating the cyberspace. As the digital divide becomes more apparent between generations, teaching the elderly how to use current technology can be a rewarding experience for caregivers.
Caregivers are chosen solely by the elder
The choice of the appropriate caregiver is most usually a collective decision, involving at once the elder, his family, his healthcare specialists, and even his friends. While the prospect of convincing an elder to be his primary care specialist can be a daunting proposition to any health care aid, the process is usually seamless and congenial, involving many different perspectives simultaneously. Furthermore, most health care aids benefit from being employed by specialized staffing agencies which match them with the most appropriate elders, often fitting to their own personality and skills.
Only wealthy people can afford elder care
Although 24/7 live-in services or top-notch private nursing homes can cost well over several tens of thousands of dollars per month, the reality is that specialized home care service is generally very affordable. Most assisted living companies offer their services entirely based on each senior’s individual needs, and it is easy and convenient for potential clients to pick out only the most essential ones that they require. It is common belief that assisted living is expensive, but with the proper budgeting and shopping acumen, elders can receive all the necessary care they require for only a modest amount.
Caregivers don’t care about their clients
It’s very important to hire a qualified elder care aid from a reputable and respected organization. Companies are usually extremely stringent with whom they hire, only selecting the best after a series of interviews, background checks, and competency tests. While reports of elder abuse are horrifying to hear about, they are fairly rare occurrences, with many health care aids often actually becoming close friends with the elders they care for.
Interested in a career in elder care? Want to make a difference in the lives of elderly citizens? Check out the link below to learn more about health care career opportunities at ABM College!