Many people find it challenging when it comes to taking care of elderly ones. Taking care of the elderly can be expensive and can eat into the fixed income of a person, who himself or herself may be retired or on the verge of retiring. Some people are also providing long-distance care for their parents by ensuring that they pay for the care from their pocket. If this is your first time to care for the elderly, here are great tips that could surely help you through your journey.
Watch Out For Their Health
Elders sometimes act like children; they become stubborn when it comes to eating the right food. As the caregiver, it is your responsibility to watch out for their health. It is critical to provide them food that is nutritious, as well as a balanced diet. Make sure that the food you prepare for them is suitable for their needs, and would give them the nutrients that their body needs.
Make The Bedroom As Safe As Possible
To make the bedroom as safe as possible is an essential step for improving night care for the elderly. You should consider the usage of bed rails and bed assists to help your senior get in and out of bed safely. There are also ‘no-slip socks’ that will help them to gain stability under their feet when they do get out of bed. All these items are available on sites that offer products for seniors. Besides, the lights in the bedroom should be motion activated so that they can light up as soon as the senior is out of bed.
Stimulate Them Intellectually
There has been a lot of research about the effect that stimulating the brain on a regular basis can have on memory and mood. There is now significant evidence that shows people who continue to learn, read, and think critically into their older years tend to avoid memory problems a lot longer than those who don’t.
While caring for elderly parents, think of ways to keep them mentally stimulated. Bring them a variety of books, magazines, newspapers, and even websites to read. Give them puzzle books, or sit with them to work on puzzles at the table with them. Make it fun!
Safely Provide Heat
Many seniors want additional heat at night. It is recommended that you provide your elderly loved one with extra blankets, water bottles, and other non-electric heating means. However, if you are using an electrical device to heat their room then be sure that it is placed at a substantial distance from the bed. This will help to prevent severe and even life-threatening accidents. Finally, if you choose to use an electric blanket, consider getting one that has a timer so that it will reduce the heat after your loved one has gone to sleep.
Stimulate Their Passions
Hobbies are a great way to help them remember that they have talents and skills. Perhaps they can even teach these to others, such as grandchildren or other people who may appreciate the wisdom the senior has to offer. Encourage them to stay or become active in hobbies that they have been passionate about throughout their lives. If they like to read, find glasses and other devices to make it easier to see books. If they can garden, let them get out and do that Small gardens are easy to start and maintain and don’t require much space. Do they enjoy music or theater? Take them to live!
Light Up The way
Motion activated sensor lights should not be used only in the senior’s bedroom. You can use these lights down the hallway and into the bathroom. If the senior person wants to install these lights throughout the house, doing so will be another precautionary action to prevent slips and falls. This will allow him or her plenty of lighted access whenever they decide to get up. Best of all, these motion lights are both affordable and easy to install. If motion sensor lights are not possible, make sure that the existing light plan in the home is conducive to the elder person to switch on the lights.
Take Care of Yourself
You need to get plenty of sleep and take some time to yourself. Your family needs you as much as the elderly do and splitting time can offer you the time you need to de-stress. If there is no one to help, teach your spouse what needs to be done so they can give you at least a day off a week to take care of yourself.
Provide A Way To Get Help
It is crucial that your elderly loved one have a way to access help in the night comfortably. This can be done in some ways depending on the needs and living situation of the senior person. You can pre-program a phone with emergency contact numbers, or you can install a home monitoring system that will allow the elder to access emergency help with the push of a button. Finally, for more extensive monitoring, you can install video cameras that can show you if the elder person needs additional help in the night.
Consider Incontinence Needs
Many older adults have to deal with incontinence. The first step in effectively managing incontinence at night is to provide the senior with an extra absorbent or overnight adult diaper or other incontinence product. This will reduce the chances that they will have leakage or an accident in the night that will require getting up to change. If the senior does get up in the night to manage their incontinence, then the needed incontinence products should be stocked where they can easily be accessed.
Stimulate Their Body
It is essential when caring for elderly parents that you make sure they can get around on their own as well as possible. The more freedom they have to move throughout their home and travel outside of the home, the higher their quality of life and happiness is going to be.
If you have a parent with limited mobility, determine ways to give them this freedom without relying upon you or other caregivers all the time For instance, you may need to install a chairlift on the stairs so they can get to all areas of the home or easily transport laundry to an upstairs bedroom. They may also need a walker or electric wheelchair to get around inside and out of the home.
If you have a non-disabled parent, make sure they are getting some exercise and moving around. Never let them become couch potatoes or spend most of their days in bed. They will find themselves much happier if they can get up and move around on their own.
Get Into A Conversation
It would much help if you talked to your parents once in a while. Actions aren’t always enough to show that you care. Talking to your parents would let them feel that you are concerned with their thoughts and that you want to provide them the best care that they need. You could likewise benefit from these talks as elders could give you advice on your own life as well.
You can go to your church or your local senior organization to see what they offer to help you with your aging parent or friend. Many agencies can bring them food for the day or even take them to social events if they are viable enough to leave the house. Church groups offer many senior activities that can help your aging parent feel less alone. These times you can dedicate to yourself.
Find Practical Solutions
This could mean health care services or medical equipment. When you think you need assistance in lifting your parents or getting to a different room in the house, you can always buy medical equipment. There is a lot that you can find, which can help you take care of your parents at home.
These tips are things you need to do to make sure you are a good caregiver. If you do not take care of yourself, you are not going to be an effective caregiver.