Careers in Direct Care Work in Mental Health
If you are thinking about a career in mental health, you might check out being a Direct Care Worker. First off, a Direct Care Worker is also known as personal care assistants, caregivers, home health aide, or personal care aides. These workers assist people who are sick, injured, or mentally or physically disabled (often elders).
An interview with a Direct Care Worker made clear that in this job you expect the unexpected, and that no college course can fully prepare you for this kind of work. For example, this worker stated that reading about schizophenia is very different than dealing with a schizophrenic who is hallucinating. Also, she noted that many individuals need further care with Activities of Daily Living (ADLs). These are the activities that we take for granted like getting bathed, dressed and using the bathroom.
All in all, however, this Direct Care Worker discussed many positives from providing direct services in the mental health field. YFor example, yu get to know the clients and you are able to forge trusting relationships with them. In addition, you are able to learn how people cope with struggles that may be quite different from your own. Finally, you get to work with professionals (e.g., nurses, medical doctors, and pschologists).These professionals can end up being a very useful reference if you decide to pursue an advanced degree.
In conclusion, being a Direct Care Work is not necessarily easy, but you can benefit a great deal. These jobs offer a service to the community, help build compassion, and can help you decide if a professional career helping and working directly with clients is sor you.
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