Determining when exactly your parents need help around the house can be difficult. But one thing is for sure: they won’t be the ones to tell you!
Seniors and older adults want to stay independent in their own homes for as long as possible. If you were in their situation, you would probably feel the same way. They also don’t want to place the burden on their loved ones.
Major Injuries that Trigger the Need for Home Care
When it’s time for home care, you will notice signs, such as a traumatic event or a “wake-up call”. This can include the following:
- Major injuries from a fall
- Cognitive decline, such as the early stages of dementia
- Walking away from a stovetop burner
As soon as you discover these events, there is a lot of emotional pain involved as well as the need to make a difficult decision on behalf of your aging parents. After the first sign, be sure to monitor their physical conditions and mental abilities as well as research home care options so you’re prepared when the time comes.
Check out the following signs that your parents need elderly home care assistance.
Difficulty or incapable of performing activities of daily living:
- Dressing and grooming
Recognizing other issues:
- They forget things. Your parents may be missing appointments or forgetting where they parked the car. This happens to everyone from time to time, but it will happen much more frequently with seniors. This may also include symptoms of the early stages of Alzheimer’s or dementia.
- They no longer travel. This doesn’t mean traveling long distance. If they tell you they are no longer running errands because they feel tired, don’t drive at night, or stop attending special events, this is a sign that they need help with transportation.
- Has loose clothing. If you notice unexpected weight loss, this may be a result of them foregoing healthy meals. If they tell you they no longer cook because it’s too much of a hassle or they don’t go grocery shopping because they don’t have the energy, this is another sign.
- Has spoiled food in the fridge. The occasional items that are left to become moldy in the back of the refrigerator is one thing, but if all of the food is expired or bad, there is cause for concern. This can be a direct result of cognitive impairment.
- The car is dented or has dings. These are signs that your parent may have trouble driving. Conditions like neck arthritis or physical distress may be preventing them from parking or turning around.
- Has a messy house. Poor memory, vision, or ability to move freely throughout the house can result in the house becoming untidy, cluttered, or dirty. Look around to assess the level of cleanliness to determine whether or not their home still provides a healthy living condition.
- Has an unkempt appearance. Poor hygiene is often a sign of cognitive issues. Forgetting to wash or brush their hair or simply forgetting to shower as well as the physical inability to do so will signal the need for a caregiver.
- Has unpaid or overpaid bills. Cognitive issues and/or poor memory can also result in forgetting to pay bills or overpaying them, even threatening their financial stability.
- Has unexplained bruising. This is often the first sign of injuries due to falls. If they are unable to explain their bruising, consider researching a home care agency to help with fall prevention.
- Hold onto furniture for support when walking. A cane or walker can only do so much to prevent falls and provide support when walking. But tripping hazards threaten major injuries, especially if a caregiver is not present.
- Is not taking medications. Aging adults will often forget to take medications, which can also be a symptom of the early stages of dementia. This is a sign that they will need medication reminders to maintain a healthy condition.
Taking Action to Seek Home Care Services
If you have noticed one or more of the signs mentioned above that home care is necessary, it’s time to get help. While bringing up the topic of introducing home care services is difficult, there are ways to help them feel more comfortable.
For example, if they mention their activities regarding self-care or home maintenance, ask how you can help; let them know that you are there for them. This would be ideal if it can be done over a period of time rather than having one big talk.
You may also ask your parent’s doctor to help, such as during their next appointment. Having it come from a doctor can help them to understand the need for home care. In some cases, a simple solution such as a new pair of glasses, physical therapy, switching a medication, or hearing aids are all that may be needed.
But other cases may be more complicated. If you feel like you need help during this transition, a local senior center may be able to provide guidance to help them feel more comfortable.
Getting Home Care Services
Many older adults shudder away from the thought of moving to a nursing home as they feel lonely, dependent, and unwilling to live in an unfamiliar environment. This is true for many seniors and nursing homes are also very expensive.
On the other hand, an alternative solution that has become increasingly popular among seniors is senior home care services. Without having to leave their home, a caregiver can help them maintain their independence. This includes assistance with their daily activities, like maintaining personal hygiene, walking, eating, and transferring.
Other tasks include meal preparation, transportation, light housekeeping, and more so your loved one won’t have to worry about maintaining a healthy diet or not having energy to go grocery shopping. The home health aide can also combat any feelings of loneliness or depression by providing companionship; they will engage them in their favorite conversations and activities.
Simply contact the home care agency and they will answer all of your questions. You may find that they provide the perfect solution to keep your parents healthy and safe as well as peace of mind for you.
Get a Free Consultation
Assisting Hands Home Care proudly serves Lombard, IL and the surrounding areas with professional home care services. Give us a call at (630) 313-6160 for a free consultation.