When loved ones reach an older age, they need your help and support. They might not say it aloud; you must understand their needs yourself.
Your loved ones, such as your parents and aunts in the house, took care of you when you were little. Now they have reached a vulnerable age, so it is their right and your duty to provide them with everything that increases their comfort and improves their quality of life.
If you have been caught up in a situation where your elderly needs your help and care, here is how you can fulfill your responsibilities.
- Visit them frequently
Often your loved ones need medical and professional help that cannot be provided at home. Therefore, it is better to register them in a nursing home.
A nursing home is where the elderly get support from nurses, doctors, and other medical professionals. Most nursing homes provide a satisfactory level of care. Therefore, family members find them safer for their loved ones.
Though your loved ones will get the company of people like them in a nursing home, they still need you. So visit them often, talk to them and ask about their health and the services provided.
- Look for signs of negligence
When your elderly is in a nursing home, don’t be negligent of any signs of nursing home abuse. Make a routine check of what they eat and wear and where they live. If your loved one is not showing improvement, their health is deteriorating, and the rooms and sitting areas are not clean, don’t hesitate to file a complaint. If the nursing home administration does not respond to your concern, approach an ombudsman.
Do you know what is an ombudsman for nursing homes?
It is someone who handles complaints lodged against nursing homes. This person listens to and solves the problems faced by residents in a nursing home. So, it is the right person to approach if your loved one is having issues in the nursing home.
- Hire professional help
Some kids don’t want their parents to go to a nursing home. They prefer providing all the medical and household help at home. It could be because of stories of nursing home abuse or any other reason. If you have the same views, you need to understand that it is often difficult to care for an older person on your own.
If you don’t prefer a nursing home, hire professional help. You need someone who has experience of looking after an older person. This person must be able to do house chores, provide medicines on time, and communicate with you about your loved one’s health. It will be perfect for your loved one if you can find a nurse to do all this.
Nurses have the sufficient clinical knowledge and can provide full support to their patients in all departments. They can help your loved one eat a healthy diet, sleep properly, and ensure a speedy recovery.
- Make necessary changes in your house
Elders don’t always have perfect sight and hearing abilities; their balance is often not impeccable either. Therefore, they are at risk of experiencing falls and other types of accidents at home.
You must ensure that your house is the safest place for them by making the necessary changes. Below are some changes you can make to make your house safer for your older adults.
- Install non-skid mats in the house
- Never leave a slippery area unattended
- Keep their washrooms always dry
- If they use a wheelchair, have a ramp in the house
- Their washroom must have a commode
- There should be a seat for them to sit when showering
- The shower area and staircase should have handrails for support
- Place carpet on the stairs to make the surface non-slippery
- Cables and cords should not be lying around
- Remove extra furniture and accessories which can impede their movement
- Illuminate your house for better visibility
- Put auto-sensor night lights, which only light up when you pass through that area
- Have smoke detectors and test them frequently
Those mentioned above are just a few examples of the changes you can make in the house. You can go beyond them according to the particular situation and health condition of your elderly to ensure their safety, health, and well-being.
- Be open about finances
Discussions about finances and money matters with your elderly can be very challenging. They might hesitate when discussing with you.
Most elderly think they must always provide for their kids. It is very difficult for them to go in the opposite direction and ask for money from their kids. Therefore, your parents or other elderly might hesitate to ask for financial help. Understanding their difficulty, you must offer support without making it very obvious.
Calculate their monthly income (pension) and expenses to see the difference. You have to help them cover the difference. You can buy house supplies and medicines, pay house rent, and so on. It is better not to tell them explicitly about the financial help you are providing so that their self-esteem remain intact.
- Provide them healthy diet
A healthy diet is very important for your loved one. Instruct the housekeeper to provide your elderly with freshly cooked food daily. Discuss with doctors about anything they should and should not eat. Generally, the elderly must avoid excess sugar and fat consumption.
Providing them with healthy food will improve their health and speed up their recovery from various age-related medical conditions. Make sure they have fruits and veggies in their diet. You can ask what fruits and veggies to include in their diet from their doctor.
Taking care of your older parents or other loved ones is very challenging. It requires a collective effort from all members of the house, including the kids. Everyone in the house must spend time with them to ensure they are never alone and can quickly find help when needed.
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