When you’re a family caregiver, it’s easy to have compassion for your loved one, but you still might not realize exactly what it feels like to be in your loved one’s situation. There are some things you can do, however, to gain a much better understanding of what life is like for your elderly loved one.
Talk to Your Loved One’s Doctor
An easy way to start out is to talk to your loved one’s doctor. Let him know that you’re trying to understand what your loved one goes through on a daily basis. He can describe to you what your loved one’s specific health conditions do to limit her both physically and mentally. This can give you a great overview.
Try an Aging Sensitivity Class
Another option is to take an aging sensitivity class. Many hospitals and senior agencies have these types of classes regularly. You’ll often do specific activities, such as wearing glasses that simulate vision problems or wearing braces that restrict your ability to move. By performing different activities throughout the class, you gain firsthand knowledge about how difficult it can be to age.
Do Some More Research
You can find quite a bit of information in books and on the Internet that can help you to understand what your loved one is experiencing, too. Often you can find firsthand accounts written by people who have lived that situation. Another option is to join a support group where you and other caregivers can talk about what you’ve learned.
Talk to Your Loved One
Finally, don’t overlook talking directly to your elderly loved one. She can let you know exactly how she feels on a daily basis. Each day may be different for your loved one, depending on how she’s feeling and how her health is responding to specific treatments. If you’ve already gone through the other steps, you might find it easier to understand exactly what she’s saying when she tells you that a day is a good one or if it’s not so good.
All of these activities help you to gain valuable information about what your loved one experiences each and every day.
If you or an aging loved-one is considering in-home caregivers in Chestnut Hill, PA, please contact the caring staff at Assisting Hands of Central Philadelphia. 215-274-0900.