Senior care is a demanding field that presents a number of practical, mental, and emotional challenges. While qualified workers come to their posts with thorough training, they must have a number of natural qualities to be effective advocates for their clients. First, a senior care worker must be reliable enough to follow through on his or her commitments and remember important scheduling elements such as medication dispensation and personal care timetables. Relatedly, the caregiver should be able to demonstrate compassionate flexibility, which allows him or her to respond appropriately when the client's needs change.
A senior caregiver must be able to show an attitude of compassion as well as respect. Seniors need to feel not only that their caregiver is meeting their needs but also that the person is treating them with dignity. This is particularly important when clients begin to need help with basic tasks such as eating, bathing, and toileting. In a similar vein, caregivers should also demonstrate patience and take the time to understand a client's frustrations, disappointments, and triumphs. Above all, a caregiver should genuinely care about the client and let that caring show in all interactions with the person and his or her family.