Taking care of and supporting our ageing loved ones can be a rewarding experience. It’s about giving back to the people who nurtured and guided you through your life.
In saying this, it does come with challenges too. Here are some tips on supporting your ageing loved ones.
As good as it may sound, taking on a caring role can usher in a rollercoaster of emotions: frustration, concern, guilt and even anxiety. It can be a full-time job and it will take some time and patience to do.
Supporting the elderly can be a daunting task. However, it isn’t something you have to do alone. Armed with the right knowledge and a team of specialists, you can look after and support your loved ones in a positive and rewarding way.
Before caring for an elderly person, it’s best to evaluate their unique situation. My Aged Care also has a number of resources available for caring for those with a particular need, such as dementia, incontinence, etc. You can determine their support needs by carefully observing them.
Here are some things to watch out for:
- Unpaid bills
- Frequent memory loss
- Lack of concern with personal grooming
- Problems with managing their medication
- Leaving their house unlocked or the stove on
Once you’ve seen these signs, talk to them about your observations. Give them time to explain after raising these concerns. If they start to argue and become defensive, ask assistance from a senior care provider. They can help in explaining your loved one’s condition and develop a care plan in the process.
Plan and organise
After your assessment, it’s time to develop an appropriate plan for them. This is usually a four-step process tailored to meet their individual needs. This may include the following:
- Nutrition (meal planning)
- Housekeeping (laundry, groceries and cleaning)
- Safety and social needs (daily visits and transportation)
- Personal and health care (therapy, hygiene and medication)
It’s important to organise these things to help you manage your time. This will also prove useful if you need assistance from siblings or relatives.
Consider other living facilities
Most homes aren’t designed to accommodate an ageing person’s needs. Seniors assisted living facilities, retirement villages and nursing homes have trained medical staff to attend to all their requirements, as well as apartments and living spaces designed to support their needs. They are also a safe place to meet new friends and engage in social activities. You don’t have to do it alone and you definitely won’t be considered weak for getting help. At Seasons we have a range of different options to help make caring for your loved ones easier.
Be reasonable, flexible and patient
Always be calm and patient when taking care of the elderly. Maintaining their dignity is of utmost importance. Encourage autonomy and let them make decisions for themselves. If their desires are different from yours, acknowledge them. Even if your efforts aren’t appreciated, wear a smile and let them know they are loved.
These tips will help turn a big task into something more manageable. Know your limits, take care of yourself and ask for help when needed. This ensures the quality of care your loved one deserves.
For more advice and assistance, talk to our team at Seasons today by calling 1300 732 766 or enquire online.