Do These 8 Things If Your Parents Need Elderly Care
Aging is a completely natural process and it happens to every person. However, as people grow older, their health is usually not at its best, and they sometimes need help. If your parents need elderly care, there are many ways in which you can ensure that they are staying safe and healthy. You, of course, need to figure out and understand their needs and research what your options are. Many people find this to be overwhelming. And of course, that is understandable, as everyone wants to do what is best for the people who raised them and who they love a lot. If this is the way you are feeling, do not worry. There are many options you can opt for and you just have to find the one that suits you and your parents the most. Below you will find 8 things that you should do if your parents need elderly care.
Find the right nursing home
As people grow older, it is no longer safe for them to be living on their own. Sometimes they cannot prepare the meals for themselves, sometimes it is exhausting for them to go to the store or anywhere else on their own. And at times they have certain health conditions that require regular medical attention. And truth be told, no matter how old you are, if you are living on your own and you are not seeing too many people, it can get kind of lonely.
Because of all of these reasons, being in a nursing home is a great option for an elderly person. They can always have company and people who can take care of them and be there for them if they need anything. If you do not know which ones exist, you can simply search for “nursing homes near me” and find the one that suits your parent or parents the most. If they have any specific needs or unusual medical conditions, make sure that the nursing home you opt for will accommodate those things.
Understand the financial situation
Caring for an elderly person can cost a sufficient amount of money so it is important to estimate future costs and be prepared as much as you can. Consider what kind of medical care they need and will need in the future, the cost of a nursing home, caregiving supplies, and so on. Once you have an idea about how much all of this will cost and what their financial situation is, you will know if any changes need to be made. And if you need any help, there are various programs that can help you pay for long-term care.
Work on home safety
If your parents are going to live with you, or if they insist on living in their home, it is important that you work on some safety measures to make sure they will not get injured. For instance, if one of them needs a wheelchair, make sure that you make your home or their home wheelchair-accessible. This can include a ramp on the entrance, a staircase elevator chair, grab bars in the bathroom, or anything else they might need. This will not only keep them safe but will also allow them to feel normal and move around the house without any issues.
Include them in the process
Nobody would like to lose control of their own life, especially when it comes to someone who is already worried about losing their independence. So, make sure that you include your parents in the whole process and let them know that it is up to them to make the choices for themselves. You should only be there to make the whole process easier and help them, not to make every decision for them. Of course, if their decision would put them in danger, you might act a bit differently.
Let them know they have your support
As people age, they often feel like they are a burden to their loved ones. This, of course, is not correct for the vast majority of families. Nevertheless, they still tend to feel that way. This is why it is important to let them know that they have your support. Let them know that you are there for them for anything they might need. Whether it is to prepare food for them, pay their bills, or simply hang out, make sure that they know you will be there for them. This will make them feel loved and they will be safer as they will ask for your help whenever they need it.
Support them in staying active
Staying physically active is important no matter how old someone is. In particular, when it comes to older adults, regular exercise can help them maintain the strength of their joints, muscles, as well as bones. This, of course, reduces the chance of injury and improves recovery time when someone gets injured. So, make sure that you are supporting your parents in staying active. They do not have to do extensive workouts to achieve all of this. They can simply take a walk every day if that is all they are comfortable with.
Think about your own abilities and needs
Even though it is important that you take care of your elderly parents, it is also important that you think about your own abilities and needs. If the plan is for them to live with you, think about whether your physical, as well as mental health, allows you to do so. Consider whether it would be smarter to have a professional health worker come and help your parents on a daily basis if some things are hard for you to handle. Thinking about all of these things does not make you a bad child, it just makes you human. So, sit down with your parents and discuss what kind of arrangement would suit all of you.
Make communication accessible and simple for them
The thing that can help your parents stay safe is being able to communicate easily with you, and other people in their life. Besides being a safety hazard, loneliness and isolation can have a very bad effect on their overall health. So, make sure that they have a phone that is easy to use. And if necessary, keep some numbers pre-programmed on their phone, just in case they might need it.
This list can, of course, be extended depending on your parent’s needs and their wishes. But, whatever you do, remember to discuss with them and make sure that they agree with any decisions that will affect them.