What makes a good carer? | Care in Kent

Without a doubt, working in the care industry is one of the most rewarding career choices out there, and innate qualities such as patience, empathy and understanding are essential in order to be able to do the job to the very best of your ability.

But when it comes to being a good carer, what other skills do you need?

It takes a special type of person to be a carer – we always say it’s not just what we do, it’s who we are…but among the long list of qualities that make a good carer, there are skills that can be learnt, improved and honed – and these work alongside in-built characteristics such as kindness and compassion.

Good carers strive to make those that they are caring for feel safe and secure, and to always treat them with dignity and respect – but that’s just the tip of the iceberg. At Care In Kent we’ve taken a closer look at some of the things we think make a good carer.

1. Passion!

Caring isn’t just a job, it’s a calling, and the passion that we have for what we do is something that the whole Care In Kent family shares. Our carers are passionate about the care they provide and about meeting the needs of those we care for. The care we provide is person-centred, and we work closely with both our clients and their families, going the extra mile to ensure that the home care service we provide is second to none.

The passion we show at Care In Kent for what we do extends beyond the actual act of caring to continually building on our existing knowledge and skills, furthering our education wherever possible so that we can offer specialist care even to those living with conditions such as Alzheimer’s, dementia, and Parkinson’s.

2. Positivity

One of the key skills that makes a good carer is a sunny disposition and an up-beat, positive attitude. Our carers are always ready with a smile and an encouraging word, because we know the importance of positivity and the role that it plays in the health and well-being of our clients – after all, positivity is infectious! Part of that positivity is encouraging and supporting those we care for to do what they can for themselves, helping them to continue living as independently as possible.

how to be a good carer | care in kent

3. Experience

We’re not talking about previous experience as a carer – we simply mean life experience! We care for people from all walks of life, and so carers from different backgrounds and with varied life experiences under their belts are essential when it comes to effectively relating to our clients and building great relationships.

4. Empathy And Patience

These are two skills that make a good carer and that go hand-in-hand, particularly when it comes to working with older people who might be living with conditions such as limited mobility or cognitive issues.

A good carer is someone who is able to put themselves in the shoes of their clients, and uses that skill to understand their needs and tailor the care that they provide. Patience is vital too. Life as a carer can throw up all sorts of frustrating situations and challenges, and one of the things that makes a good carer is the ability to handle those times with understanding and a calm, compassionate attitude – something that is made so much easier if you are able to be empathetic to what the person you are caring for is going through.

5. Reliable And Respectful

For older people – especially those who are living with dementia – routine can be very important, and so another key skill that makes a good carer is the ability to be dedicated to time-keeping, as well as being someone that can be relied upon to ensure that the needs of their clients are met.

The very best carers are not only reliable when it comes to making clients feel safe and comfortable, but also when it comes to being respectful of the choices of those in their care. At Care In Kent we respect the decisions made by our clients, and empower those decisions, helping them to continue to be as independent as possible and to enjoy a high quality of life – a life where they feel listened to and valued.

6. Good Observational And Communication Skills

Man in nursing home being looked after by a nurse | being a  good carer starts with communication

In the care industry, being observant can literally save lives, and a good carer is one who pays close attention to the people they care for and uses those skills to help identify any mental or physical health issues. Good carers are able to use their observation skills to pick up on any signs that could be a cause for concern, helping to ensure that any health conditions can be recognised and treated early. Being observant also helps carers to keep track of how well a client is eating, drinking, and sleeping – all things that could cause issues if not properly monitored.

Good communication skills are equally important – especially if you have observed something in your role as a carer that needs to be discussed with a third party such as a health professional – as well as for providing comforting reassurance and explaining what is happening to the person you are caring for. Another important role for a carer is in encouraging conversation with your clients, listening to stories about their lives and sharing your own – a great way to build long-lasting and trusting relationships.

Remember if you are looking after a loved one its important to look after yourself too! Make sure you take time to relax so that you can continue to give the best care that you can. If you find yourself struggling and feel like you could do with some help, get i touch to speak to a memebr of the team about our home care services.

Could you be a carer?

Have you read this and recognised your own skill set? Are you passionate about making a difference to the lives of others? Are you looking for a career that fits in with study or family life? Give our team at Care In Kent a call and find out more about a rewarding career in care.

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