Pittsburgh / Allison Park Senior Care Blog

Tips for Making a Road Trip with Your Elderly Loved One Healthier

By Erin Carll

Senior Care in Gibsonia PA

Taking a road trip with your aging parent can be one of the most enjoyable events of your summer with them. If your elderly parent has challenges or limitations, however, it can be daunting to plan a trip that will keep them safe, healthy, and comfortable as they travel with you. Fortunately some simple planning ahead of time can help you to create a road trip that is healthy for everyone along for the ride.

Use these tips to make a road trip with your elderly loved one healthier:

  • Talk to their doctor. As you are planning your trip, take some time to talk to their doctor about the vacation and your plans. This will allow the doctor to give you personalized recommendations based on the specific needs and challenges of your aging parent. They can give you suggestions such as ensuring that your parent wear compression stockings if they need them, or how to manage medication compliance while on the road.

  • Take your time. A road trip with an elderly parent is not the time for you to be fast and furious with your scheduling. Going at too frantic a pace is not only stressful for everyone involved, but it can also increase the chances that your elderly parent will experience health complications. Plan for plenty of breaks throughout your trip so that everyone can get out of the car and walk around to stretch their legs, get their blood flowing, and reduce the risk of blood clots. Be sure to plan in bathroom breaks as well to reduce the chances of incontinence, bladder infections, and constipation. If your road trip is more than a few hours, consider planning a night at a hotel halfway through so that everyone is fresh and healthy throughout the experience.

  • Keep up their schedule. Scheduling is an important consideration when it comes to a care journey with your parent. While it will not be possible to keep doing exactly the same routine while you are on the road, do your best to keep up their schedule as much as you can. Schedule meals and snacks at the same times that they would have them at home, plan for quiet times when your parent might have a nap at home, and work in breaks that will allow for them to be active when they may have been at home. This will not only keep their body healthy and comfortable, but will also minimize stress, anxiety, and other emotional and cognitive limitations.

  • Bring along help. Senior care can be an exceptional source of help when you are on the road with your aging parent. A senior home care services provider can be there with your loved one to help them maintain their schedule of personal care and to offer reminders for their medication compliance. They can also provide assistance for tasks such as toileting, eating, and other tasks while you are managing the needs of the other members of your traveling party, giving all of you peace of mind that everyone is kept as healthy as possible.

If you or an aging loved one are considering hiring in-home senior care in Gibsonia, PA, please call the caring staff at Home Helpers. Call today (412) 201-0712.