As we navigate our way through life, it becomes increasingly important to ensure that our family - especially Mom and Dad - are cared for in every possible way. While they may have taken care of us when we were younger, it's now up to us to make sure they're comfortable and content.
So how do you check in on your parents without being overbearing or intrusive? This article aims to guide you through the process with humor and wit, while providing valuable insights into how to support your loved ones as they age.
Gauge the Current Situation
Before jumping headfirst into caring for your parents, take some time to assess their current situation. Do they need immediate assistance or can daily tasks still be managed independently? It’s essential not only for approaching them about needing help but also for maintaining their autonomy if possible.
Some things you can look out for include:
- Missed medication
- Poor hygiene practices
- Difficulty with simple math
- Constant memory lapses
- Increased house clutter
Coupled with asking a few questions separately makes more sense than interrogating them all at once; understated inquiry is key here!
Speak With Your Parents About Their Needs
Once you’ve assessed their living environment/home function abilities--speak with them about any needs/wants/doubts/you might have noticed so far. Approach this tactfully by framing it around “establishing routine checks.” Benefits include being informed about post-operational procedures after treatment(s), insurance policies on long-term care (health/welfare funds included), and other similar provisions that would ease everyone's mind!
Remember that elderly people often hold fiercely onto their independence--so easing gently toward offering help is everything! Listen first before suggesting potential solutions when presenting dilemmas.
Don’t Assume What They Need
Sometimes children of aging individuals place undue importance upon what THEY think old folks need or want. Remember that is their aging process--not ours, so perspective-taking and giving them a chance to say what exactly they need/want/desire makes all the difference.
You might think mom needs an E-reader or dad requires help wearing shoes since struggling with mobility challenges: it's best to hear directly from them about such wants/needs instead of guessing!
Find Ways to Offer Support
There are numerous ways to offer seniors love + helpful support without being overbearing, thus maintaining quality of life standards:
Help Them with Transportation
Seniors might gradually lose driving privileges as they age or become less mobile--hence relying solely on public transport for crucial appointments becomes next-to-impossible! Boosting transportation links between family members/local charities/public services can ease stressors related to loved ones not knowing how to get around after stopping driving; sometimes laughter included in shared car rides (yes,you read this correctly) prove healthy relationships still breeze easier at times.
In cases where your folks drive -- make sure you're there for any direction conflicts/near-misses/inconvenience caused by errands.
Cook Some Meals For Them
Not everyone master the art of baking but baby steps towards cooking nutritious meals regularly could mean providing essential care beyond just physical errands. Nutritious food items maintain energy levels while increasing endurance regarding fighting diseases common among older adults. Even better? Time spent sharing one’s heart over good food than household chores are moments that would last a lifetime! Also worth noting meal prep is among duties under home healthcare as many licensed experts specialise in geriatric nutrition management if ever needed in the future.
Help With Grocery Shopping
Accompanying Mom/Dad when grocery shopping has other positive outcomes apart from grabbing bags heavier than usual(read leg day workout)! It creates opportunities for meaningful interactions across generational lines sharing life stories,promoting active weight loss strategies(such fun works wonders!),and/or highlighting nutritional needs.
Also, driving them to grocery shops/departmental stores offers a chance for seniors to take things off their list of personal “to-dos'' while maintaining high-quality relationship standards.
Ensure Their Home is Safe and Comfy
Additionally, it’s vital to make sure the house they live in is safe and comfortable since most ageing parents opt for staying at home rather than moving into pricey nursing care facilities! Some good-to-consider measures include:
Installing Grab Bars or Rails
Home decor items like grab bars comprise general attachment fittings that promote balance for older adults with mobility challenges within bathrooms/home doorways. Simply put: these affordable modifications could ease hopelessness/depressing thoughts from parents who used to be handling chores without any problem before--now suddenly challenged subtly by an aging body!
On the other hand? They avoid potential accidents such as slips/falls that would delay ongoing treatment follow-up visits thereby improving quality of life greatly
Decluttering Common Areas
Clearing excess clutters can create more space indoors (closed rooms not included) making navigation easier around essential spaces in Mom/Dad's house; preventing tripping hazards especially when circumstances require accessing vital documents/equipment items regularly! Also worth noting - deep cleaning often benefits elderly individuals/mobility-compromised persons (a lot!) aiding mental & physical health benefits besides neatness.
Well-maintained houses translate also to an environment that encourages professional caregivers if you’re looking into assisted living programs later on. It counts favorably on your household state checking your options not solely out-for-service providers whenever possible interesting discussions await during this phase of planning - involving both parties too!
Ensuring Good Lighting Exists Around The House
Most seniors suffer vision problems related to bad-light effect --they might require devices such as fancy ‘readers’ glasses just among examples. Preferred methods ensures safety over time maintaining brightness levels optimally for unrestricted mobility/living independently; a simple bulb replacement? Easy! To choose from the litter: get cool energy-efficient light bulbs instead of reducing ambient lighting which may worsen their situation further worsened.
Be Mindful of Their Emotions and Mental Health
It's not uncommon for ageing people to struggle with mental illness in silence. Depression, anxiety, or even Alzheimer's are all common as people reach old age --and addressing such issues might be one thing seniors grit teeth over openly discussing. Let’s take a peep at some things you can do:
Regular check-ins aren't limited strictly to physical errands (tiring chores , yay!)they could also include video calls/emails/text messages/check-up visits. Research shows having something regular on calendars encourages accountability where possible reactions is support when needed--offering buffer time during times when life feels too overwhelming among other things!
But wait... Feeling hesitant about approaching emotive topics? Remember those insights mentioned earlier?
Encourage listening first before making guesses/suggestions for potential remediation steps alongside immediate professional help if necessary depending on severity assessments made by licensed physicians/experts.
Loneliness ranks high among elderly-related stressors--even more so now than it was decades ago especially COVID-19 notwithstanding! Taking out time regularly scheduling lunches after grocery shopping days/car rides walks particularly under sunny skies plus humor sprinkled in conversations with loved ones remain excellent options gearing towards quality connections with parents whose sagely years requires compassionate yet firm guiding arms whenever necessary acknowledging both parties’ perspectives - surely counts as an emotional investment that pays off richly always!.
Conclusively, aging takes its toll upon us all but there's joy to find equally within these stages sometimes we overlook valuable growth opportunities available between our relationships-caregivers included-without breaking banks while offering love tenderly along the way efficiently.enjoy every single moment of being human, folks!