04 February | 2022
Adult children with aging parents might not know how to talk to a loved one about senior care. If you’re worried about a loved one’s declining physical or mental health, it can be challenging to broach the subject of long-term care. Topics around this decision include senior living, money, health, and aging in place at home. At some point, you’ll need to discuss possible modifications, such as adding grip bars in the shower and other upgrades that can make them feel more comfortable.
At first, your parent may resist discussing health care, personal care, or home care services. However, with the right preparation and strategies, you can begin the difficult conversations needed to ensure their health and well-being. If you are apprehensive about approaching this subject, it’s understandable — luckily, there are plenty of tips that can help you through these conversations.
When you talk to your parents about staying in their home, stress the benefits of quality in-home care. Although they may currently get help from a family member, having a caregiver dedicated to their needs can help them get proper assistance with personal care or help around the house. Stress the advantages of getting help at home rather than living in an assisted living facility.
Your elderly parent or loved one may worry about losing their independence. It’s crucial to set their mind at ease about turning to an in-home caregiver service, so it may help to remind them they can have more autonomy in their own home than living in a nursing home. Plus, if they’re having trouble getting around, having a caregiver can facilitate toileting, personal hygiene, and preparing meals. If your loved one frequently forgets to take their medication, in-home care can help ensure their health and safety. It’s important to emphasize that they are still in charge, but having someone to assist them with the activities of daily living is a benefit to them.
If you are lucky enough to have both parents still alive and living together, you can try a new approach. Sometimes, it’s worthwhile to suggest in-home care that would benefit their spouse. Bringing up the topic of senior care to a loved one is easier with an ally. This may be one situation where it’s alright to play both ends against the middle. If you have a particularly stubborn parent, try starting the conversation with the one most open to receiving help with housekeeping and transportation, for example.
Eldercare can seem like a frightening proposition for many older adults. Before you can have a productive conversation, you will need to dispel any fears. If you receive a hostile reaction, that’s most likely fear talking. No one wants to lose control of their life, dignity, or financial independence, and with a caregiver in their home, your parent may feel more vulnerable. Let them know that they have complete control over who comes into their home, and even suggest doing a trial run on a short-term basis. Once they realize you’re on their side and see the benefits of in-home care, they may begin to relax.
Hire an in-home caregiver after your parent returns home from surgery or a hospital stay. If your parent is in good health, you can still emphasize that you want to do a trial run. Having a family caregiver present for the first day or two can help ease your loved one into a daily routine with their caregiver. However, it’s also important to let your parent and the caregiver build a daily routine without interference. If you’re planning an upcoming vacation or need some time away, that’s the perfect time to do a trial run.
Finding the best way to approach a loved one about senior care isn’t easy, and they may resist you every step of the way. Remember, you are doing it for their welfare — your parents have always been there for you, and now you need to be strong to make the right decisions for them.
Contact Aging With Comfort for home care specialists and other home nursing services in the Philadelphia area when you want to help your loved one live at home safely.
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