Caring For an Elderly Parent

Many middle-aged Americans find themselves caring for an elderly adult, usually a parent. It is a labor of love, but it is work. So much effort goes into caring for an elderly parent most people find they need help at some point.

Specialized Care for Them

Sometimes injuries dictate when it is time for a specialized facility. Chronic medical conditions may prevent the elderly from taking care of their own medical and hygiene needs; such cases are usually obvious. However, sometimes the change is less abrupt and the line is blurred such as with many dementia cases. If your aging parent lives with you changes may be so gradual you barely notice them, so keep a written record that can serve as an objective measure. If your parent has trouble recognizing you, remember where he or she is, or finding the words to communicate basic ideas, it may be time for memory care denver. Recurring falls, decreasing mobility or increasing isolation may indicate a need for assisted living.

General Care for You

You may spend so much time and energy meeting the needs of an elder adult that you neglect your own needs. You cannot give what you don’t have, so be sure you care for yourself as well as you care for others. Keep yourself physically healthy with good nutrition, quality sleep and regular exercise. Keep yourself mentally healthy by nurturing social connections, sustaining a positive attitude and maintaining your sense of humor. Remember that you need breaks from the daily care activities you perform for your parent, so reach out to family members and friends to see if they can spell you for a bit. A short vacation can recharge your batteries and allow you to return home refreshed and re-energized. If no one is available to help, reach out to community services and support organizations. Programs like adult day care can afford you a few hours of respite each week and give your parent mental stimulation at the same time.

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