Adult social care is a vital part of our society that many people do not know much about; it is most often defined as providing services to adults with disabilities, chronic illness, or mental health conditions who are unable to perform daily tasks on their own.
If you are looking for more information on becoming involved in the process, or if you want to learn what it takes to be a professional within this field, continue reading. This article will discuss exactly what adult social care is and why it's important.
What is adult social care?
Adult social care is a service provided to adults who have needs related to their mental or physical health, age or disability. This can include practical help such as getting dressed and preparing food, but it also includes emotional support from people who understand what they are going through.
Adult social care is not just for older people; anyone may be eligible for adult social care depending on their specific situation. This could be anything from late teens living with a disability to middle-aged individuals with complex issues.
The type of care you provide will depend on the individual’s circumstances and the kind of help they need. It also depends on what you’re interested in pursuing.
Direct care roles: Activities worker, care worker, personal assistant, advocacy worker, rehabilitation worker.
Regulated professional roles: Occupational therapist, nurse, social worker, complementary therapist, counsellor.
What does social care include?
Social care services can include help related to personal care activities such as bathing and dressing and assistance with chores around the house like laundry and cleaning. It can also include assisting people in making decisions about finances they might not otherwise be able to handle themselves.
Adult social care can also mean providing a person's meals and even living quarters if need be. This type of support is essential for an individual's continued independence and quality of life while still maintaining some level of dignity.
The local council can also offer adult social in different settings such as:
- At home: This is often called 'domiciliary care' or 'home care' and provides a more one-on-one approach with personalised attention.
- Daycare setting: Daycare settings often refer to local community centres where those in need can meet with professionals. This could include outdoor spaces, cafes, restaurants and sports centres.
- In a specialist home: This refers to ‘supported living’, ‘shared lives schemes’ and ‘extra care housing’.
- In care homes or nursing homes: This is also known as residential care and services are provided in the care home.
Career path for adult care services
As an adult care services professional, you will have the opportunity to make a serious impact on someone's life. And given how the services are always required, it’s a career that will always be in demand.
The first step for anyone interested in becoming involved with adult social care is education. A basic requirement for working in adult social services is your GCSEs, which provide a baseline for further education. Once you’ve acquired your GCSEs, you have access to take A-levels, which is the most prevalent means of accessing higher education.
There are means to acquire your GCSEs and your A-levels, and one of the most accessible ways is online learning. Online at Oxbridge places you in a situation where you can complete courses at your own pace for both career progression and personal development.
Obtaining a care-related degree would allow you to specialise in areas such as social work, senior support work or occupational therapy. However, you can also complete a Health and Social Work course to work with physical and learning disabilities individuals.
If you’re passionate about helping others, a career in health and social care is perfect for you. Speak with our learning advisors today to get started or browse our Health and Social care courses here.