Caring for an elderly loved one can be a good experience, but the responsibility can also be overwhelming. To make this role less challenging, you should create a checklist and truly understand what is required of you. Below are some of the things that should be on your checklist when caring for an aging parent.
Identify Your Loved One’s Needs
Remaining independent allows older adults to maintain a better quality of life and increase their longevity. Identify your loved one’s needs and create a routine that encourages independence. Knowing as much as possible about your loved one’s physical and mental health gives you the opportunity to create a daily routine based on his or her strengths as well as the ability to simplify various tasks and activities, enabling your parent to stay independent without compromising his or her health. Some of the tasks you can simplify include physical activities and exercises, errands, meal prep, and household chores.
Divide Tasks Among Other Family Members
Developing a schedule and delegating tasks can make caregiving easier on you. It’s important to continue working if possible, and you also need to maintain social networks with people other than your parent to reduce your risk of depression, chronic stress, regret, and boredom. Dividing tasks among your family members and close friends ensures everyone has input into your loved one’s care, which reduces tension.
An additional option is to enlist the services of a compassionate professional caregiver. Caring for a senior loved one can be rewarding, but it can also be overwhelming for family caregivers who have other responsibilities they need to focus on. For these families, the perfect solution is respite care. Waterloo, ON, families rely on our caregivers whenever they need time to rest, work, run errands, and even go on vacation.
Organize Important Information
Emergency situations can occur, and you need to be ready for these instances. You should know the names, addresses, and contact numbers of your loved one’s medical providers, financial institutions, insurance providers, family members, and close friends. This information should be visible to you and your loved one. Make copies of important documentation, such as your parent’s driver’s license, social security card, and insurance policies. Put these copies in a secure place that your loved one’s guests cannot access.
Know Your Options
You’re never in this alone, even if family members don’t step up to help with your parent’s care. You can check with local organizations and government agencies to see if your loved one qualifies for free or discounted assistance with meals, transportation, social activities, and household chores. Receiving outside assistance could lighten your caregiver load physically, mentally, and financially. Go over your loved one’s health insurance policy to determine if professional caregiving services are covered. If so, you can hire a professional caregiver to help on an as-needed basis, giving you more free time to practice self-care and work on professional goals.
Though you may be researching multiple agencies that provide elder care, Waterloo, ON, Home Care Assistance has much to offer your family and your elderly loved one. We are leaders in the senior home care industry, offering proprietary programs like our holistic Balanced Care Method and around-the-clock assistance from reliable, experienced caregivers. Trust Home Care Assistance to help your loved one enjoy a happier and healthier life in the golden years.
Your loved one may be able to make health decisions now, but there could come a time when it’s necessary to step up and speak on his or her behalf. To avoid personal and legal confrontations, your loved one should speak with an attorney and express his or her wishes ahead of time. Asking your parent to designate you or another trusted individual as his or her health care proxy could prevent legal battles and other difficult situations in the future.
Following the items on this checklist can help you plan how to provide effective care for your loved one, but at some point your parent may need the assistance and expertise of a trained professional caregiver. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of in-home care. Waterloo, ON, families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide individualized care plans to meet your elderly loved one’s unique care needs. Our holistic Balanced Care Method was designed to help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and our Cognitive Therapeutics Method offers mentally stimulating activities that can stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia. Call one of our friendly Care Managers today at (519) 590-2792 to learn more about our customized care plans.