Holidays – A Chance to Assess

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One of the great joys of the holidays is reconnecting with family who may live far away. But sometimes when adult children visit their elderly loved ones, they find significant changes in living conditions, health and wellness. This can translate into unsafe living, either not having enough fresh food in the house, crowded conditions, or a kitchen in dangerous disarray.  

When you are visiting parents and other elderly relatives this holiday season, take a quick look around – is the food in the refrigerator outdated or spoiled? Or is there just very little of it? Does your loved one seem to have lost weight? 

What about their state of mind? Do you notice increased forgetfulness? Look for unopened stacks of mail and, if possible, inquire about unpaid bills. Financial abilities are the first lost as we age – even seniors with no dementia or mental health issues may become confused when dealing with health insurance, credit card companies, or other financial institutions. 

Can you easily move around the house? Are there signs of hoarding? Is the house relatively clean? Carrying cleaning supplies throughout the home can be very challenging. 

If you notice any of these changes, it may be time to consider talking with your loved ones about in home care. Assisting Hands serving Columbus, OH caregivers provide numerous invaluable services, including: 

Companionship 

If your loved one is spending a great deal of time alone, they are at risk for depression. Assisting Hands serving Columbus, OH has a wide range of caregivers on staff, and we strive to make a great match between caregiver and client. Our caregivers can not only engage with your loved one where they live, they can take them to visit friends, to museums, to community activities – we even had one lucky caregiver who joined his client on a round of golf every week! 

Personal Care 

A caregiver can provide your loved one with assistance in bathing, dressing, eating, incontinence care, medication reminders, oral hygiene, walking and personal mobility, transferring to and from chair, bed, or wheelchair, toileting, and other services tailored to meet individual needs. 

Safer Living 

Falls are one of the greatest risk factors for seniors. A home caregiver can provide an assessment of the home and provide suggestions on how to create a home environment that reduces the risk of falls. Caregivers can also work with seniors to maintain a physician-approved exercise program, accompany them on walks and errands, and help ensure the home is clutter-free. 

Better Nutrition 

Companionship is a key part of meal preparation and enjoyment. Our home care professionals don’t simply prepare meals, they engage your loved one in the process. If they want to join in, they can help with preparation in a way that matches their abilities – or maybe they just want to hang out in the kitchen to chat.  A home caregiver can also help your loved one to follow generally accepted nutrition standards or prepare meals according to a doctor or nutritionist’s recommended diet. 

Medication Management 

The typical 75-year-old takes more than 10 prescription drugs. Managing that array can be very challenging! An in-home caregiver can provide medication reminders and take your loved one to the pharmacy or pick up prescriptions. 

Transportation 

A caregiver can do grocery shopping and run errands and will be happy to bring your loved one along if desired. Sometimes it’s just the reassurance of having someone else there that will give them peace of mind. Not only do the errands get done, your loved one can get a mental boost from being out and about, interacting with others. An in-home caregiver can take your senior loved one to medical appointments, grocery shopping and even to the theater or other social events. 

Light Housekeeping 

Many chronic health conditions make it difficult for seniors to keep the house clean. Or, limited mobility or fear of falling can make seniors nervous about carrying buckets of cleaning water, bending over to use a dustpan, or even making the bed. Vision problems may mean they can’t see when something needs to be cleaned (or can’t see that something they cleaned needs a little more elbow grease). A caregiver can vacuum, dust, sort mail, organize closets and help ensure the house is free of fall hazards. 

It’s not unusual for seniors to resist having a caregiver in the home. Let them know that having a helping hand will enhance their independence and ability to keep doing what they love to do, whether it’s going to bridge club, gardening or simply watching TV. At Assisting Hands serving Columbus, OH, we carefully match caregivers with clients for not only specific needs but personality as well, so we’ll find the right caregiver for them. A better quality of life for your loved one and peace of mind for you – get in touch today for a consultation.