Holiday Visits with Elderly Parents can Reveal the Need for Additional Help
During the holidays, time spent with family is abundant and these moments are great opportunities to watch for signs that may indicate your parents could be in need of additional help. While it's crucial to be aware of their needs, remember to be discreet when determining how they're doing. You don't want to cause them to feel defensive or as though their privacy is being compromised. Taking notes will be a helpful resource, even if you find that they are functioning well on their own, as you will be able to refer to your notes in the future and be more aware of any changes.
Here's a list of questions to ask yourself and signs to look for:
*Has their weight changed? *Is a normal conversation difficult for them, or are they repeating themselves or asking questions multiple times although they've already received the answer? *Do simple things seem to confuse them? *Have there been any issues with their driving skills such as tickets or accidents? Do you feel safe when riding with them? *Have they lost interest in activities they once enjoyed? *Are they less socially engaged than before? *Are household tasks being left undone, does the home seem more cluttered or less clean than normal? *Is there sufficient food in the home, including fresh items in the refrigerator? Or are the items expired or moldy? *Are they taking new medications you weren't aware of? *Are medications organized in a manner that makes it easy to take the correct dose, and are there expired medications stored with current ones?
It may also be helpful to ask a sibling, spouse, or other close family member to also observe your loved one during these interactions, then privately compare your observations. They may notice something you didn't or be aware of a situation that hasn't yet been brought to your attention. As always, your loved one's safety is a priority and we at Home Helpers are dedicated to providing compassionate and professional assistance. Please don't hesitate to call us at (208)963-5655 or visit our website today.