The aging of relatives is not only part of their life cycle, but also part of the family life cycle. If you suddenly find out your parents want to meet their old age in their own home – do not be surprised. Home care for the health of old people is more beneficial than moving to a nursing home. This is the conclusion reached by American researchers. 87% of adults over 65 want to stay at home so that they could calmly live out their years.
Adults want to stay both healthy and independent in old age, but the traditional caring methods for sick old people in nursing homes seriously undermine the patients’ independence and worsen their quality of life. Many adult children fear their aging parent will be at high risk of both loneliness and isolation. However, if you allow people to grow old at the place of residence, providing them with qualified help as needed, this will greatly strengthen their emotional state. Most people do not have to be transferred to nursing homes at all. Another common problem is both falling and inability to drive with age. However, older people can stay at home if everything is well planned. Here are some tips to help overcome on this difficult life stage: Learn how to talk with your aging parent about aging on the spot. Do not be afraid of discussing this topic with your relatives! It’s never too late! The situation of aging relatives is normal. All the families are being treated, and each of them should come out of this crisis. How? It depends on a number of factors: the former relationships of family members, their tolerance, selfishness, empathic, maturity, anxiety, the material family conditions, the characteristics of employment, etc. Make a plan of being your parent safe at home. Ask your parents what is important to them. Listen to the answers carefully. Your aging parent should feel he has been heard and his wishes are valuable to you. With aging relatives, both a thoughtful and heartfelt approach is needed. It is important their privacy to be respected. Your parents can tell you they do not feel safe driving. In most cases, older people want to stay in their home for as long as possible — everything is quite familiar and comfortable in their own home, it gives a feeling of confidence and security. Older people do not tolerate change. The easiest way to understand what changes need to be made is to look at HIS eyes.
2. Thrilling safety issues for aging at home
Older people are sometimes trusting and helpless, like small children. It is important to inspect your loved one’s home and find everything that could be dangerous. Then you can make all the necessary changes to prevent accidents. The main dangers awaiting retirees are associated with a higher risk of domestic injury. And our task is to do everything possible to secure the life of an elderly person. Alas, injuries among elderly are very frequent. And bruises and fractures are the most common among them. The ability of our body to regenerate decreases with age. Not only bad weather (for example, ice) or an unfortunate furniture arrangement in the apartment, wet bathroom floor, etc. are the main causes of frequent falls of old people. It will not be superfluous to remind the grandmother from time to time to stay at home in bad weather – the risk of slipping and falling during the rain is always very great. If possible, it is better to accompany the ward on walks, in shopping and to the doctor. To lock up an old person at home, in order to avoid problems, would be the wrong decision – deprived of fresh impressions, retirees can “wither away”. They need to get out into the world – but with the observance of simple precautions. Always remember about the risk of fire at home: install fire and smoke detectors, regularly checking all the batteries inside. When replacing household appliances, select those, having an automatic shutdown feature.
Check the space organization in the kitchen. Store dishes, glass and other frequently used items in drawers or in a closet for safety, from where it is convenient to get them. Make a simple, easy-to-read list of important numbers for you and your loved one, keeping it handy.
Include the numbers of other relatives, neighbors, and emergency services. It is also recommended purchasing a special organizer for medicine.
3. A plan to make daily routine changes.
Tools for needlework can be purchased – if both vision and skills allow. If you try, you can organize the participation of the elderly in different events. This will not only bring positive emotions from communicating with people, but also bring joy from the realization someone likes your company.
Nowadays many social protection centers organize leisure activities for old people, providing master classes and concerts for them. By the way, pensioner societies often have their vocal ensembles – if there is a desire, you can try to identify the ward there. One of the factors of long-term preservation of thoughts clarity and consciousness among retirees is the development of something new – new craft techniques, new knowledge, even computer training. It is being noticed: the brain engaged in education is aging much slower. And this fact should not be neglected. Check the floors in all the rooms and make sure they are not slippery. Bath mats and carpets should be flat with no corners and edges which you can stumble. If necessary:
- cover the rugs with anti-slip tape and throw away uneven carpets with full-blown edges;
- spread anti-slip mats in areas where there is often slippery floor (for example, in the bathroom and in the kitchen);
- Apply anti-slip coating on stairs. Check all the furniture is stable, fix or replace all unstable items. House modernization can facilitate bathing, dressing and moving around the house. Talk to your parents about eating options. You might consider shipping products. You can order food for them or hire a person to help with cooking.
4. Meeting the need for communication
For the elderly, loneliness is associated with a decrease in activity due to disability or inability to move, and not to the lack of social contacts. Old age is often a period when both help and support is needed to survive. This is the main dilemma. Self-esteem, independence and assistance, hindering the implementation of these feelings, come to a tragic contradiction. Try to visit relatives more often. What can be done in moments of visiting? Not teach him, be a listener, an entertainment partner, a sympathetic friend. Those responding to emotional state, respond to be heard too. Call them! You still need to restore all the broken social ties. No previous friends? Find a new man at any age. Meet someone in the same park, talk in a, museum or find a club of interests – there are still chess clubs in the same parks. You can sit down and watch or participate. Find places for new hobbies to help both children and grandchildren.
5. What are the care options?
It is very important to talk with parents about what care options are available for him at home. It is clear caring for sick elderly is even more difficult, and therefore neighbors or acquaintances are unlikely to perform the nurse functions. So the choice is small: to attract a professional or take on a lot of trouble for yourself. Many older people will like the idea of hiring a cleaner once a week. Or food delivery. A visiting nurse is, as a rule, a qualified person who has undergone special training and being aware of all the caring nuances for older people. This is not an easy profession: patience, hard work, sense of humor, compassion and sincerity are needed. This combination is rare because there are not so many really good nurses. The nurses can be incoming (paid by the hour) or permanently living (with a fixed payment for a certain period of time).
Responsibilities of a carer for an elderly person:
- cleaning (wet and dry)
- washing and ironing
- cooking food
- purchase of products (by agreement) or drugs
- payment of utility bills
- communication and support
Take care of it right now!