Ageing is a complex process, and not everyone ages the same way. It’s an accepted fact of life. Sooner or later many of us are faced with the stark reality that our parents are ageing too, and care options may need to be considered as they get older.
No matter which care option best suits your older parents, it’s never too early to start thinking and talking about it. Many hasty, bad decisions about care have been made in an emergency, after a medical episode or accident, without time for research, discussion, or planning.
If ageing at home is the care option your parents would prefer, the next question is;
When is the right time for home care?
Here are some signs that your older parents may need some extra care at home.
Are your parents on multiple medications? As people age, they are more likely to have more than one chronic medical disorder. While medications assist and treat health conditions, the risk of adverse side effects can increase in older people. Some medications can cause dizziness and impact balance, resulting in falls. Other medications may affect thinking, and cause confusion. Home care services can assist with medications and welfare checks.
Are you finding that your parents don’t seem to be moving about as sprightly as they once did? Do they heavily rely on handrails for balance when they walk up or down stairs? Is the vacuum cleaner too heavy for them to pull or push when cleaning? How do they cope pushing the lawn mower around the yard? Home care services can include house cleaning, gardening, and even home maintenance.
Are your parents still able to drive safely? Often, medical conditions or declining mobility can make driving unsafe. To maintain an independent lifestyle, it’s important to be able to attend appointments, activities, and run errands. If your parents should no longer be driving, home care providers offer a transport service.
Is your elderly mother or father maintaining a balanced diet? Some older people, especially those who live alone, lose the inspiration to cook healthy meals. They find it easier to heat packaged food in the microwave. This is fine every now and then, we’ve all done it. However, a healthy diet including fruit, vegetables, whole grains, dairy, meat/fish or alternatives is important for ageing well. If you are concerned your parents may not be receiving the nutrition they need, home care services can assist with meal preparation.
These are just some signs to look for when deciding if the time is right for your parents to receive home care services.