Your parents cared for you growing up. Now that they are moving into the later stages of their lives, the tables have turned and it’s your turn to care for them.
Caring for aging parents has the potential to be a burden emotionally, financially and time-wise. Here are our tips for caregiving to make it the best situation for everyone involved:
1. Maintain Contact
There is no excuse for losing contact with aging parents. Video messaging makes visiting with elderly parents easier than ever. Even if you don’t live nearby, you can make time for a face-to-face interaction once per week to check in.
At the very minimum, chatting on the phone once or twice a week will help you keep tabs on your parents emotional and physical wellbeing. Plus, it gives your parent something to look forward to.
Living nearby makes maintaining contact more straightforward, though not less time-consuming. Set regular expectations of when your parent can expect you to visit.
2. Keep Mom and Dad Engaged
Loneliness is a real problem in the elderly community. By keeping your aging parent engaged in some of their former activities you can help stave off the depression that affects so many elderly people.
You may need to drive them to and from social groups, church services, or classes. Maybe it’s as simple as going grocery shopping together or catching the latest movie at the theater in town.
Regardless of the activity, it’s important to keep your aging parent engaged in their community and family. It
3. Know Your Limits
While it’s natural to want to care for an aging parent when they are no longer able to care for themselves, it’s not always feasible. Knowing your limits will make sure that your parent is receiving the best care possible, from the most qualified people.
Whether this means checking out nursing homes or considering home care from a group such as Commonwise Home Care will be dictated by the level of care that your parent needs. Either way, knowing how much time and expertise you have available to commit to an aging parent will help you allocate their care more appropriately.
4. Reduce the Financial Pressure
The cost of taking care of an aging parent can be a financial burden on many families, especially if mom or dad requires specialized care. If you can find a way to share the burden with other family members, it takes some of the pressure off the primary caregiver.
Other options include exploring Medicaid benefits, searching for federal or private benefit programs that help defray some costs, or finding ways to reduce prescription drug costs.
Caring For Aging Parents
Caring for aging parents is never easy, but there are tips and tricks to ease the transition.
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