Owners' Blog

How Can You Be More Helpful to a Senior with COPD?

By Hilary and Greg Eldridge

It can be really frustrating to know what to do for someone with COPD. Your family member can have good days and bad days, but it’s not so easy to predict when those will be. There are steps you can take that can support her no matter what type of day she’s having.

Talk to Your Senior’s Doctor

The first step in learning how COPD affects your senior is to talk with her doctor. Her doctor can help you to understand what stage of COPD your elderly member is experiencing now and what the future holds for her. Her medical team can also put you on the path to finding even more information that can come in handy.

Learn the Symptoms of an Exacerbation

An exacerbation is a temporary flare-up or worsening of the symptoms of COPD in your senior. What this means is that your elderly family member’s normal symptoms, like coughing, shortness of breath, or wheezing may become worse or more frequent. Your family member might also become fatigued far more easily because her COPD is taking much more out of her. Triggers for exacerbations might include exposure to triggers like pollution or fragrances or even sickness, like pneumonia.

Seek out Support Groups

Support groups are an excellent way for your elderly family member to meet other people wrestling with COPD. You can go to the meetings, too. Seeing other people talk about what matters to them when managing COPD can help you to understand what your elderly family member is going through on a daily basis. You can also learn from other caregivers how they help manage COPD for their family members.

Simplify Everyday Tasks

The biggest thing that you can do for your family member is to simplify her everyday life and tasks as much as possible. When your elderly family member is fighting just to be able to breathe, it’s so much more difficult to get tasks accomplished. Home care providers can take over many of these daily tasks for your senior, especially the repetitive tasks that always need to be done. That way your family member can focus on what she really needs to do.

COPD is complicated and it can take a lot out of your senior. COPD looks a little bit different for everyone that has it, too. Your elderly family member might have good days and bad days, so that’s something else to watch out for as you’re developing a care plan for her.

If you or an aging loved one are considering hiring homecare in Snellvllle, GA, please contact the caring staff at Home Helpers, call (678) 430-8511.