How To Care For Elderly Family
There isn’t much that’s more sobering as time passes than watching your relatives age. As a small child, your parents and grandparents looked after you – but as the year’s pass and time move on, the realization that you’re starting to look after them instead is startling and often quite upsetting. Here are some tips on what to do as your relatives age and you start to take on more of a caring role for them.
Talk To Them
Even if your loved one is starting to show signs of dementia and confusion, you must keep talking to them. They might be a little slower to pick up on things than they were and find it harder to follow conversations, but they still want to be included and to celebrate your life and your achievements. Repetitions can be annoying to deal with but take a deep breath and stay calm and just answer the same questions so you don’t upset them.
You’ll be surprised at how quickly you get used to doing that. Also remember that people whose memories are starting to fail are often better at talking about the past than the present – ask them about their childhoods rather than what they had for breakfast that morning. Also remember that it’s much easier to talk about concepts because a lot of the time, your elderly grandmother will still have an opinion on relationships or love or music or art – they don’t have to know who’s number one in the charts to appreciate a good tune.
It’s important to be prepared for what might lie around the corner. Make sure that your relatives are financially stable and have wills, and keep an eye on their outgoings. If you start noticing a strange mixture of products in their fridge, it might be time for you to start doing their shopping.
Also be aware that their bodies aren’t what they used to be. Incontinence can be a big issue for the elderly and it can be something that is deeply upsetting both for you and for them, as they can find it very embarrassing.
Make sure that you don’t allow your loved ones to lose any of their dignity. Keep urinary incontinence products at your house for when they come to visit, along with a spare change of clothes just in case.
Look Into Residential Care
Please don’t feel guilty if you have to put your loved one into residential care. A lot of the time this is the safest place for them to be. It’s important that you start looking around at possible options before you’ve actually reached that stage, so you’re well prepared for the future. If possible, select somewhere close to your home so that you can visit easily.
Knowing that your elderly loved one is in a safe environment will help you sleep better at night and will also give you a much-needed break. Your physical and mental health are important and you must remember that you shouldn’t set your life aside to care for someone else. Not only is it bad for you, but your loved one wouldn’t want you to either.