Helping an Older Adult Maintain Their Independence
As July 4th is on us, it is perhaps a good time to reflect on the ways that your aging parents and loved ones can be helped to continue aging in place, with as much of their independence and safety intact. Older bodies are sometimes less able or suited to the tasks of living and managing on their own, but with some tips and tricks, you can support their continued existence in their own home.
As falls are one of the major risks to a senior living on their own, improving conditions like lighting, adding support railings, clearing footpaths, and making sure all the carpets and thresholds in doorways aren’t tripping hazards.
Establishing a regular schedule of checking in on a regular basis is also a great idea. While you don’t need to be in contact 24/7, checking in regularly can go a long way towards making them feel secure and cared for. If your loved one is tech-savvy enough, consider using videochat or Facetime instead of just an audio call, so you can see as well as hear each other. And if distance allows, regular visits to socialize in person, or to take them grocery shopping, can also help to keep them active and healthy.
If you’re uncertain about your older loved one being on their own, in-home care is a great option. Because they continue living at home and the help comes from outside, the amount of care can be tailored to their specific situation. Maybe they only need help in the mornings, or at medication times, a caregiver can be present for only a few hours a week, or several hours each day.