Tips to Help You Care for an Elderly Parent

Elderly Parent Blog

Introduction

It can be difficult watching your parents age. Helping them adjust to new, and often intimidating, life changes can be challenging for both of you. If you have an elderly parent who is in need of help, you will need to learn  the best ways to help them. You may also need to learn how to have them accept that help. It is important for you to give your parent your time and attention and to assist them when they need it.  However, you have to make sure that you are accomplishing this in the best possible way for both of you, and that you are being sure to care for yourself, too.

1. Be Accessible

One of the best ways you can care for your elderly parent is by just by being there. Being at their side lets them know you love them and are there to help. If you have a parent who is getting older and in need of regular help, you can best care for them by being a regular part of their life. Find ways to be accessible every day. Give them assistance when they need help with everyday activities, even those as simple as getting dressed. Let them know that you’re there to help them get to doctor’s appointments as well as on any other errand they need to complete. Give your parent the help that they deserve by being a regular part of their life each day.

2. Find Others to Help

It will be very difficult to solely take care of your parent without help from others. If you try to take care of your parent on your own, you will quickly wear yourself down. When you are worn and tired, you will not be able to provide your parent with all of the help they need. To care for your mother or father in the best way possible, and make sure that they consistently have everything they need, you have to find help. Ask other family members who are willing to give their time and also, look into hiring someone to step in.

3. Use a Medical Alert System to Watch Over Your Parent

When you are caring for an elderly parent, look for tools and new technologies that can help you care for that individual. One helpful product that can reduce anxiety is a Medical Alert System.  These devices can help you keep an extra eye on your parent and can make sure they have the help that they need in an emergency. A medical alert system might just be the answer to the extra help you need.  Be sure to look into all they can offer you and your parent. Peace of mind will allow both of you to get through your days easier.

4. Adjust Your Parent’s Living Space

As you are caring for an elderly parent, you need to consider the layout of their home and any possible hazards that are in that space. You need to think about hazards such as a rug on the floor that could easily trip your elderly parent.  You also need to adjust their living space to make it easier for you to care for them. For example, you may find that a walk-in tub is a good choice in that regard. A walk-in tub could help them feel safe and also help you to assist them if necessary. Making their home safe, and easily maneuverable, will help you successfully care for them.

5. Call on Your Parent’s Doctor

Doctor and Elderly Parent

When you have the responsibility of caring for an elderly parent, you want to make sure that you attend to all of their needs. You may find it helpful to turn to experts in order to make sure you are doing things correctly. Contact your parent’s doctor and ask them to let you know what can and cannot be expected of you. Learn as much as you can from their doctor so that you can provide your parent with the best possible care.  Take notes on what medications they are taking and the proper dosage and times.  Write these on a calendar for your parent to ‘check-off’ as they take them.

6. Take a Break

In order to be the most helpful to your parent, you need to take care of your own health and mental well-being. You need to learn to take a break now and then, to step back and let someone else care for them. It is important for you to get away from the ongoing, daily responsibilities and to take a breather whenever you feel worn out. Look for chances to get away and to let someone else care for them while you take a break.

7. Do What You Can to Help Your Parent Live a Comfortable Life

It is important for you to take care of your mother or father in the same way that they did for you. Be there for them when they are in need of help and let them know that you will always be available. Care for your parent as much as possible while still looking out for yourself. Take a break when you need to, then return being able to focus all your energy on giving your parent the help that they need.