All of us are not getting any younger so old age is a sure destination. Sooner or later we will first face the possibility of taking care of our elderly parent or kin. It just makes sense to consider how it will affect our lives. Here are some heads-up about how to care for the elderly:
Discussion with Loved Ones
It is a good idea to have a serious talk with your loved one before they show symptoms of old age. Know beforehand how they see elderly care so you can, perhaps conform to their wishes when the time comes. Through these honest discussions, you will be clear about the best way to care for them and make sure their well being and physical health are maintained.
For instance, your mother may not like going into care home or just want to stay in her own house. One sensible tip is to discuss about the Power of Attorney. When the time comes that your loved one can no longer handle his or her own finances, you can step in and talk about how to look after them.
Creating a Safe Environment
Creating a safe environment is part of effective care for old folks. You have to be prepared beforehand (or preempt) serious issues to prevent them from happening; or find solutions. Make sure you remove hazards around as older people are prone to falls, trips and slips.
For instance, the bathroom can be a dangerous place with its showers, hand or grab rails. Another hazardous place is the stairs, so you put a stair lift. A good idea is to install smoke alarms that feature strobe lighting so old people can notice them even if they have hearing problems. As for arthritic hands, they may need a special equipment to make their cooking easier.
Adjustment to Aging Conditions
It may take time for elder people to accept that their needs have changed. They used to have independence and it may be difficult for them to accept they are losing it. Old folks also tend to revisit their past, talk about them repeatedly or go through old photos and films. It is a good idea to let them do that, enjoying their memories. Reliving the past is a good exercise that brings them joy. Also be ready to acknowledge their past achievements, even the simple ones, like being able to raise good children.
Encourage a Healthy Social Life
Loneliness can be a curse, especially for the old ones. Hence, encourage them to have a social life and not a recluse. You can take them out from time to time, such as for a walk, go shopping, or driving around familiar places so their interest in life continues. Have them to go out or attend group exercise, social events and activities.
Motivating The Old
Encourage the old folks to develop new hobbies, or continue doing their favorite ones. Mentally active is as important as physically active. The elderly gets easily discouraged and is less motivated. Between parents and their children, the former would find it difficult to accept the reversal that the people they used to care for take care of them this time. Children may find it easier to hire someone to do the care giving for their parents while they can still be there to supervise.