If you find yourself having to take care of an elderly relative. You may be wondering how to go about ensuring that you will provide the best care possible?
Aging can be difficult not just for your loved ones but for those who care for them as well. With this in mind, your goal is probably to make your elderly relative feel as comfortable as possible.
It is entirely possible to have excellent and superb care available for your loved one. Here are some tips for taking care of elderly relatives.
Home Care Is Best
If possible you should find live-in carers who are willing to take care of your loved one outside of a nursing home or hospital setting. You may also find care providers who do home visits and others who take your loved one to health appointments.
Before choosing live-in caregivers or caregivers who visit, you must do your research to ascertain their background. Get your caregiver from an agency if you can.
Look closely at the qualifications that your applicants possess as well and their references.
You don't want to bring someone into the home who will make your loved one uncomfortable. If your loved one is lucid enough, you should ensure that you include them in the choice of a caregiver. This may mean letting them sit in on interviews with a prospective caregiver.
Create Social Inclusion
Many seniors will not have an opportunity to leave their homes because of their medical condition. However, social inclusion is something that must be done. Isolation for the elderly is terrible and can make them feel very depressed.
If possible you should teach your loved one how to use some of the latest technologies for communication. In this way, they can go on the internet and find groups with elderly people and they can talk to other loved ones on video calls whenever they want.
A lack of Mobility does not have to affect connectivity during the digital age.
Secure the Environment
The environment in which your loved one lives is very important to their comfort. You need an environment that helps to make them as independent as possible.
At the same time, you want to make sure that the environment does not expose them to an increased risk of falls or other types of bodily harm. Be sure to make adjustments in the home as necessary so that your loved one can be more comfortable.
This might mean installing a ramp or putting a shower chair in the bathroom. Think about the staircase in the home, if there is one.
Make sure that you test all the railings. You can do this by holding on to the railing and shaking it back and forth to find out if it is sturdy. If it is not, get it repaired as soon as possible.
Sometimes the only thing that will help is a complete modification of the home. This may mean installing a raised toilet, improving the electrical system to make the lights brighter. You may also want to consider investing in sensor lights that will come on automatically in case your loved one has to get up to use the bathroom at night.
Getting rid of small rugs may also be something you need to do to prevent falls. You may also have to make sure that there are non-skid mats in the bathroom and non-skid strips in the shower or bathtub to prevent falling. These are just a few examples, there are many other ways you can go about making the environment a lot more comfortable for your elderly loved one.
Pay Attention to Medications
More than likely your loved one is on some sort of medication. Even if you have a nurse make sure that you go through all these medications yourself. Make a note of when they should be filled or refilled.
You should have a pillbox organizer with different compartment labels for different days of the week. This will help to make things a lot easier for your loved one.
When the doctor prescribes new medication always make sure that you ask how it will interact with the other medications that your loved one is already taking. Being organized when it comes to medication can prevent deadly accidents.
Consider Financial Implications
Taking care of seniors can be expensive, that is why taking charge of your financial situation from now is the only way in which you can ensure that you always have enough funds available to do what you need to do.
Make sure that your loved one’s insurance is in order. If they get a pension make sure that the funds are properly allocated and available. If finances get tight make a plan about how you will get help to continue caring for your loved one.
Caregivers Need Care Themselves
One of the most critical mistakes that any caregiver can make is not taking the time to take care of themselves. One of the first things you need to do is join caregiver support. You can find a lot of support groups on the internet.
In these groups, you can express your concerns as well as your fears and converse with those who are going through a similar experience as yourself. This is extremely therapeutic and will help you to get through those days when you just want to give up or feel too tired to continue.
Get help at least once per week. Go off and do something for yourself. This is extremely important for gathering your thoughts and regaining your energy. It will also help make caregiving a lot more bearable.
Ensuring Your Loved One’s Comfort
Accepting the aging of your loved ones can be hard. It is not easy to see someone you love who was formerly active become unable to help themself after being so active.
Aside from having to deal with your own emotions, you will have to deal with all the changes that can occur. You must make sure that your loved one has proper care, financial support and does not feel isolated during the caregiving process.
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