How to Help Dad? Take Two of These Tips and Call Us in the Morning
As our parents age, we naturally want to help them in any way we can. Unfortunately, it’s hard to know just how to do this. At times Dad may seem fine (or claim to be fine), but there’s often a nagging sense of worry. Take these tips and call your aging experts if you’re ready to remove your worries.
1. Plan ahead.
Set up an care management consultation. Find out what preventative steps you need to take for aging wisely.
How should things be set up so you can best help Dad? Now’s the time to make sure your legal, financial and healthcare “ducks are in a row”. We can help you outline a plan for what needs to be done, and refer you to quality professionals.
Bonus: Sign up to get the latest Easy Living tips delivered right to your inbox. Our experts share great insights into how to help Dad, updates on Medicare, senior health and much more.
2. Get organized.
If you’re going to help Dad, there’s information you’ll need. Do you know who Dad’s doctors are? Can you get in touch with his professional advisors? Do you have Dad’s medical history? Where are the documents like the Power of Attorney and Healthcare Surrogate Designation? You’ll be left scrambling in an emergency without this information. Even if you have time to deal with a major life/health change, you’ll waste a lot of that time on this basic stuff if you’re not prepared.
Gather the vital information using the “Document Locator List”.
3. Get a home safety review and assessment.
Help Dad stay healthy and safe. Little changes can literally prevent an early move to the nursing home. Or, save Dad’s life.
- One-third of elders living at home fall every year.
- More than 90% of hip fractures occur as the result of falls.
- Falls are the leading cause of fatal injury and the most common cause of nonfatal trauma-related hospital admissions among older adults.
- There is a strong relationship between falls and subsequent nursing home admission.
4. Support Dad in staying active and enjoying life.
Loneliness and social isolation are linked to cognitive decline, poor health and even death. Staying active and mentally engaged have been shown to be protective factors for healthy aging. There’s no reason Dad can’t continue to live a vibrant life.
Home health companies like EasyLiving offer many services to help. If Dad gives up driving (or just prefers not to drive on busy roads or at night), he may become isolated. Caregivers can provide senior transportation customized to Dad’s needs and schedule.
An aging life care manager can work out a “thriving without driving” plan (and help you have that tough conversation). In-home concierge and companion services ensure Dad can continue doing the things he loves while staying safe.
5. Take steps to help Dad stay at home, sweet home.
Put those promises into action. Be honest with Dad: you want to help him stay at home but some things may need to change.
Home carries such emotional ties. Almost everyone agrees they’d like to stay there as they get older. But, the home can become a burden.
A son shares:
My Dad worked hard keeping up the home they raised us in over the years. There was no way I’d suggest he move to an ALF if I could help it. But, he had a couple accidents trying to do home and lawn maintenance. Mom did most of the cooking and laundry so Dad never really adjusted to those duties after she died. He seemed to be losing weight and eating mostly junk food. And, he was living in a couple rooms because the housekeeping was too much.
I talked to Dad and suggested we meet with Easy Living. The caregiver has been a huge help and the house looks great. So does Dad! She even cooked some of Mom’s old recipes and sent us the sweetest video of Dad enjoying his favorite casserole. Even though he was a bit reluctant at first, his huge smile in that video was confirmation we did the right thing.
6. Know where to turn for help.
Who would you call in a crisis? Would you have to begin a search from scratch?
Consider scheduling a care management assessment. You will become familiar with resources you can access. More importantly, you’ll have a plan of action to prevent crises and be prepared.
There’s nothing scarier than that 2 AM call that Dad’s being rushed to the ER. And, there’s nothing better than knowing someone has you covered. Get in touch with EasyLiving to learn more about peace of mind with our crisis intervention program.