If you have an aging parent at home and notice they aren’t at their best anymore, we feel you.
The truth is, many aging parents don’t want to become a burden for their families. So, you may face difficulty talking about helping your parents. Maybe they won’t take your help well, who knows?
However, you need to make sure your parents do not overstress them with work.
These five tips will help you better take care of your aging parents.
Take Care of Their Condition
You may have to be more assertive if your parent is acting recklessly, neglecting their safety, or behaving in a way that is not in their best interests.
When a parent has cognitive problems, this is a common scenario. Seniors living with Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia might not realize that their thinking or decision-making abilities have changed. They may continue to follow their routines, even though they might struggle to do their tasks.
In fact, even the most basic daily tasks can be dangerous due to memory loss. What if they turn on the iron and forget, only to touch it later, thinking it is not connected to electricity? The consequences can be unimaginable!
It is your responsibility to intervene, despite their protestations.
Before you jump in to help them with anything:
- Seek their permission.
- If you take your parent to the doctor, don’t assume they will allow you to go into the exam room.
- Ask them if they would prefer you to be there for the entire visit or if it is better to come in at the end to answer your questions.
No matter their age or abilities, your parents are still your parents. They expect you to be respectful at the very least. The truth is, it can be disheartening to try to care for elderly parents who do not wish to be helped. However, it is important to not be critical or demeaning while attempting to do so.
Although many people view caring for an aging parent as a “role reversal,” it is essential to remember that seniors aren’t children and require a different type of care. Remember that Mom and Dad will resist your “help offer” even more if you insist on controlling the situation.
Allow Them to do The Daily Tasks
Do tasks with your parents and follow their lead, if possible. This approach may take more time than if you did it all yourself, but you give Mom and Dad some independence by letting them lead. This can help your parents maintain their functional abilities and self-esteem.
Seniors may decide to stop participating in daily tasks and leave it up to their family caregivers. The old saying, “If you don’t use your money, it will be lost,” applies here.
This not only places a lot of responsibility on you as a caregiver but can also lead to elders experiencing rapid declines in their mental and physical functioning. Remember, you should encourage independence and not dependence.
Have a Support System
No matter how many times your parents request or accept your assistance, you should do your best to create a support system that is both safe and minimally intrusive in their daily lives.
An example of this is a medical alert system. Your parents can wear pendants – they don’t hurt and will let you know about your parents’ whereabouts in the home.
You can also hire an occupational therapist to help your parents explore all possible options to make their lives as independent and safe as possible. They can take care of their own needs by having the equipment they need. Seniors often find it difficult to accept new ways of doing things, but they will be more open to learning if they don’t have to rely on others for help.
Evidently, helping out a senior needs to be done with care. We are sure the above tips will help you do that. Moreover, consider pain management Spokane if your parent has prolonged pain issues and needs expert attention.