As life progresses, naturally our age catches up to us all. You might be finding that the people who once cared for you and looked after your every need, your parents, are now becoming more reliant on your care and help in the same way.
As we grow from child to adult we learn to look after ourselves and become independent, however as we change from adult to elderly, that role is reversed, and everyday tasks can become near impossible again. We almost fall back into that childlike state and that can be daunting. If your parents have reached that elderly stage of life and now count on you for a bit more day-to-day support, then there are a few key tips that will make both yours and your parents’ life a little less stressful as you both learn to adapt to a new way of living.
Comfort – It’s important to make an elderly person as comfortable as possible. Assessing their surroundings and understanding their needs will set you in good stead for providing quality care. You may need to make a few adjustments to their living conditions to help them feel more comfortable. Things like hospital recliner chairs, rails on the walls in the bathroom, stair lift, will all help aid mobility.
Routine – Getting into a good routine will help the day run smoothly and keep you and your parents on the same page with what needs to happen and when. Be sure to have a discussion with your parents to make sure they feel included in decisions that will affect their day. You don’t want your parents to feel like they don’t have control of their schedule, remember it’s a big adjustment for them as well as you.
Professional Help – Don’t be afraid to reach out for professional help or even just professional advice. As capable as you are to care for your elderly parent, it can at times be overwhelming. There are many benefits to you having the help of someone who is trained to care for patients in terms of their medical needs. Having a professional carer making regular visits can also help relieve some of the pressure from yourself, providing a much-needed break now and again.
Finances – One thing your elderly parents may not think to ask for help with but will certainly need help with is their finances. If you can, talk through their accounts and outgoings with them until you feel confident you can support them when needed with handling their money. Scammers unfortunately will target the elderly as they can get easily confused and mislead, so having you there to take that worry away will be a huge weight lifted off your parents’ shoulders. You may also be entitled to financial help to support your needs as a carer
Every situation when caring for someone will differ a great deal but having a few simple steps in place should help in getting to know what works for you and your elderly parents.