5 Tips in Caring for a Controlling and Cranky Senior Adults
iSavta | 01.03.2021
I just can’t stand her!
Well, she feels the same way. Especially if you are forcing her to do what you want.
We often wonder why most senior adults are being cranky all the time. Their temper is sometimes that of a 5-year-old kid and most of the time, we seriously get into an argument with them.
As a Caregiver, you have to understand that they were once a young adult, doing whatever they want and love without someone telling them what to do. Now that they are under your care, it is very difficult for them to adjust to this life especially if they were living independently during their younger years.
Dealing with physical vulnerabilities is one of the things that elderly people have trouble accepting and dealing with. It is common for them to feel conscious of having someone bathing them, holding them, and even feeding them when they are used to doing it by themselves before.
These feelings make them grumpy and cranky without really telling you why. And it is very difficult to deal with them once they get into this mood the whole day.
Part of your job as a Caregiver is to deal with these mood swings. Here are some tips that you can do:
- Allow them to do things by themselves (but keep them safe)
Allow them to do some simple things or tasks around the house if they are still capable of doing it. One simple way of giving back their confidence is to let them help you in the kitchen. Preparing their food is one of the things that they really like to do and it will give them a boost to improve their mood during the day.
- Communicate with them
You don’t directly ask them “what’s wrong?” but you can make them feel that they can talk to you and tell you everything. When they start to rant and get cranky, you can always assure them that you are there to help them in whatever they need help with. Find a way for them to be comfortable talking to you about their feelings even if sometimes it doesn't make any sense at all.
- Avoid having mental burnout as well
I get it, it irritates you. But you have to understand that you are a Caregiver and your patience will be tested through and through. When your patient gets cranky, it’s the best time to be more patient, compassionate, and understand all at the same time. The last thing your patient needs is another person getting into their nerves. Be calm but be present.
- Be Empathetic
Empathy means putting yourself in someone else’s shoes. Try to feel how they feel and listen intently with respect. As we age, we are having a difficult time understanding our feelings and why we even feel that way. Loss of independence, feeling of loneliness and physical limitations are not easy to accept and we have to be more understanding and empathic.
- Get help from family members
When your patient gets grumpy, it will be difficult to impose anything on him/her. This will sometimes cause some problems in terms of the eating, shower, taking medications, or changing diapers. When they are cranky, all answers are NO and there’s no way you can force them. Their immediate family can always help you with this and it’s a good idea to call them to talk to your patient.
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