As parents grow older, it often falls to their children to take care of them during their senior years. This might be due to a whole variety of factors, such as physical safety, mental health, and potentially a diminishing ability to live independently. Each situation is unique to each family, and not all solutions fit all problems. If you have started to notice that your elderly parent is having difficulty due to age, here are some ways you can help to keep them safe and healthy.
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One of the highest risks to people as they grow older is the possibility of becoming injured. This is not only because fitness and balance often decrease with age and therefore increase the chances of falling, but also because the bones of senior people are more brittle and prone to breaking. It is also much more difficult for the bones of an older person to be healed properly after a break, which is why preventing falls and injuries is so important. If your parent is losing mobility and balance, look for alternatives that reduce their risk of falling.
Sometimes elderly parent doesn’t feel able to provide for themselves in the same way they might have as a younger adult. This could be due to physical, mental, or emotional reasons, anything from painful arthritis to Alzheimer’s disease. If you can assist in making sure their essential needs are met by collecting their groceries, driving them to appointments, or cleaning their home, you will be helping them both practically and emotionally. Knowing that you care enough to make time for them can be hugely reassuring.
Age brings with it many more opportunities for illness and injury. Older adults suffer from far more health complications due to their age and therefore must visit doctors with increased regularity. Perhaps you could help your elderly parent to arrange medical appointments or help them to keep track of any medications they might be taking.
Looking after an elderly parent is not an easy task. It is often stressful and thankless. You shouldn’t feel guilty if you aren’t always able to provide the level of care that your parent needs. You might have other responsibilities and concerns that mean you can’t dedicate all your time to your elderly parent. Fortunately, there are many professional care services available to help alleviate the stress of caring for senior family members. If necessary, you can find 24 hour care to meet your needs. You don’t need to shoulder the burden of full-time care all by yourself.
Sometimes an elderly parent can maintain a level of independence in their own home. However, some parents might be safer or prefer the option of staying with relatives or at a residential home. These can be great for helping you to rest assured that your parent will be taken care of while also providing opportunities for your parent to enjoy their senior years.