How to Keep Your Parents Independent as They Get Older
Some activities of daily living that were previously simple may become difficult for elderly persons. Both the elderly and those who care about them may find this difficult.
There are ways to ensure your parents may continue to live safely and happily in their own home.
- Staying involved and keeping in regular contact is ideal if you are responsible for the care of your aging parents.
- Think about your own and any other carers' needs alongside your parents'.
- Do not feel like you have to do everything on your own; caregiver fatigue is real, and seeking assistance may be crucial, especially if your parent has serious health problems.
Suggestions for Encouraging Your Parents to Retain Their Sense of Self-
It's crucial to do what you can to ensure your aging parents maintain their autonomy. I hope these suggestions can be of assistance.
1. Remain Active
It's only natural for people to rely on their loved ones more as they get older. However, this is not an excuse to cut elderly off from society.
The loss of friends and the possibility of diminished social opportunities can have a profound effect on the quality of life for seniors. The outcome is an increase in the number of seniors suffering from loneliness and depression.
Seniors who live alone may experience cognitive decline due to a lack of social interaction and stimulating activities. Preventing these issues is easier if you remain active in your elderly parents' lives. If you keep in touch with your parents and visit them often, you can ease their isolation.
As an added bonus, you may be there for them emotionally and be their friend. It's a virtuous cycle that can help your parents enjoy their golden years to the fullest.
Participating in social activities (for seniors, this means spending time with family and friends) has been shown to have positive effects on both mental health and anxiety levels.
This could include activities such as weekly game evenings, group grocery outings, and participation in community events. Actively including your elderly parents in your daily activities will not only boost their sense of purpose and self-worth, but will also give you peace of mind about their continued independence.
2. Treat your parents with dignity
Having a healthy, respectful connection with one's parents is essential. Talk freely about your health, your life, and your emotions. This will make it easier to have future discussions and keep everyone on the same page.
A fantastic method to maintain open channels of communication is to have a monthly meal to catch up and discuss about our lives. It's a chance to relax in one another's company while learning about each other's recent exploits.
Have an open line of communication as you navigate the transitions that come with aging (for both of you). By doing this, you increase the likelihood of forging a bond that will last a lifetime.
3. Maintain Their Activity Levels
It is crucial to maintain a person's mental and physical health as they age. However, many elderly people struggle with mobility and cognitive impairment, making this a difficult task.
Thankfully, there are a wide variety of pursuits that can keep seniors interested and involved.
Joining a senior yoga class, for instance, is a great way to meet new people while also improving your flexibility and balance. Growing your own food is a terrific way to get some fresh air and exercise, and planting a garden is a wonderful way to accomplish both. Keeping the elderly engaged in meaningful activities can aid in preserving their autonomy and enhancing their quality of life.
4. Share information and set goals together
When parents age, they often experience unexpected difficulties that can compromise their ability to live on their own. Adult offspring of elderly parents may struggle to find a balance between providing for their parents' needs and allowing them to maintain their autonomy.
Finding this middle ground may be facilitated by cooperative planning and open dialogue. Talk to them about what they want and need, both psychologically and medically, and create a strategy together.
You can do this by making sure they have a way to get around, giving them a hand with their mess, or setting up routine check-ins. Your parents' ability to live independently for as long as possible depends on your proactiveness.
5. Communicate Your Goals Clearly
The elderly typically have more caregiving needs. As a result, this can be a trying time for the children of elderly parents. However, you can lend a hand in a number of ways.
First, make sure everyone knows what is expected of them. Tell your parents what you can and can't do, and make sure they know about any restrictions you have. Second, you should inspire your parents to continue partaking in the activities they enjoy. They'll be able to maintain their cognitive and physical health this way.
Last but not least, try to exercise some tolerance and patience. Please be patient with your parents while they go through this adjustment. They may not be able to accomplish things the way they used to. If you follow these guidelines, you can assist your elderly parents in continuing to live on their own.
6. Try to Gain a Shared Understanding of Your Parents' Wants and Needs
It's only human to want to do anything we can to ensure their continued autonomy. After all, our elders did the same for us when we were kids.
The fact that we've matured into self-sufficient adults doesn't mean that our parents have stopped being people with unique wants and requirements. Communicating openly and honestly about their needs and how you can best support them is the most effective way to assist them in maintaining their independence.
Get started by inquiring about your parents' wellbeing and whether or not you can assist in any way. Offer to help out in any way you can if they seem to be having trouble with everyday activities like cooking or cleaning. A home health aide or maid service are two examples of possible outside assistance you could look into using.
Talk to your folks and see if there's anything you can do to put their money anxieties to rest. Perhaps you could assist them in making a spending plan or getting set up with online bill pay. Keep in mind that no matter the circumstances, you should always strive to assist your parents in a way that does not compromise their liberty.
However, you must also be aware of your personal requirements. There may be a period of adjustment involved, especially if your parents' aging is accompanied by health problems such as Alzheimer's. Caregiving can be a lot of effort even if your parent is in good health. You have responsibilities for your own health and well-being as well as your financial stability.
Whether it's your siblings, social workers, a local church, home care services, close relatives, respite care, a support group, or even part-time assistance from a retirement community, take a break to assess your situation and decide if more aid is required.
Although you're doing the right thing by taking care of your aging parent, it's important to weigh all of your options before making a final decision. It can be challenging to manage everything that needs to be done in a day, especially if you also have a full-time work and are responsible for young children.
7. Recognize When to Take Action
One day, our parents' health or ability to care for themselves may begin to deteriorate. Consequently, their offspring may need to step in and lend a hand. Understanding when to lend a hand and when to step back is crucial when dealing with elderly parents.
During a visit, you can study your parents and get a sense of whether or not they require assistance. Do they appear to have difficulty with day-to-day activities like housekeeping? Is it difficult for them to pay their rent or keep up their house? The time may have come to broach the subject of receiving assistance if you have seen that your parents are struggling with basic self-care.
It's crucial to maintain an appropriate level of proximity, though. You should proceed with caution if your parents refuse to accept help.
Get their reaction to your worries out of the way first. Once you know they are willing to accept assistance, you can begin planning. Nonetheless, if they insist on staying on their own, you should honor their decision and give them as much help as they feel is necessary to maintain their independence.
8. Find Out What Other Options You Have for Getting Assistance
Your parents may be able to maintain their independence in many different ways.
One option is to enlist the assistance of additional caretakers, whether they be members of the extended family, friends, or professional caregivers. Add a ramp to the front porch or install grab bars in the bathroom if they need help getting in and out of bed.
In the United States, seniors also have access to a wealth of community resources like transportation programs and meal delivery services. As the primary care giver, it is your responsibility to first investigate the available community services and governmental aid options. When looking for assistance, Medicaid is a good place to start because they frequently have a list of options and adult day care centers that can provide it.
The most crucial step is having a dialogue with your parents about their requirements and preferences so that you can personalize your assistance. Together, you can ensure your senior parents continue to enjoy the same level of autonomy and quality of life they have become accustomed to.
Even if you can't be there for your parents 24 hours a day, you can ensure their safety and comfort as they age by following these guidelines.