Mental Health First Aid Classes Prepare Senior Caregivers for an Emergency

By May 21, 2014Uncategorized

Senior caregivers have a special job. Each day, they attend to the mental and physical needs of older adults. With many seniors facing a number of mental health challenges, emergency preparedness is extremely important among senior caregivers. For example, older adults with Alzheimer’s disease often require emergency mental health interventions. With that in mind, one of the best ways to boost your caregiver skills is by taking a Mental Health First Aid class.

What is Mental Health First Aid?

First aid, as it applies to mental health, is one of the most valuable tools in the senior caregiver’s arsenal. The classes are conducted in-person and offer training to help individuals who are either experiencing a mental health emergency or developing a mental illness. The skills taught in Mental Health First Aid can help senior loved ones to properly cope with a mental crisis and, ultimately, receive the appropriate medical care.

What Can You Learn?

Mental Health First Aid classes can teach senior caregivers techniques and skills that truly make a difference. Just as you learn CPR to help an individual whose heart has temporarily stopped beating, Mental Health First Aid shows you how to intervene during a mental health crisis. Participants will learn:

  • Signs of mental illnesses
  • 5-step action plan to help senior loved ones
  • Impact of mental and substance abuse disorders
  • Local resources

Senior caregivers can also expect to learn specific strategies for helping an older adult in both crisis and non-crisis situations, along with gaining contact information for professional assistance.

General Topics Covered

Instructors will go over the many different mental illnesses, how they affect a senior’s daily life and which actions help during a crisis. A few age-related conditions you’ll cover are:

  • Depression and mood disorders
  • Anxiety disorders
  • Trauma
  • Psychosis
  • Substance abuse

Life-Saving Interventions

When you take a Mental Health First Aid course, you learn how to take action in a variety of situations. For seniors, those situations will include:

  • Panic attacks
  • Suicidal tendencies
  • Self-harm or injury
  • Hallucinations or delusions
  • Reaction or overreaction to a traumatic event

Find a Mental Health First Aid class near you today.

Image Credit – http://www.mentalhealthy.co.uk/sites/default/files/bigstock_Nurse_talking_with_elderly_peo_13106801.jpg

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