Americans are getting older, which means that many adults are facing the prospect of supporting older parents through the aging process. These six tips can help you navigate the intricacies of helping your parents age at home. Read More About medical alert system.
1. Listen To Them
One of the most empowering things you can do for your parents as they get older is simply listening to them and hearing what they have to say. For example, if they want to stay at home instead of moving to a retirement home, try to respect those wishes by offering help or arranging for supportive in-home services. Remember, a little bit of empathy can go a long way to reassuring your parents that you have their best interests at heart.
2. Check on Healthcare Concerns
Some older adults are so busy that they forget to check on their health consistently. So, while it is great to encourage taking omega 3 supplements to support a heart-healthy lifestyle, you also want to be proactive about knowing your body and discussing the best way to maintain your health with your doctors.
3. Encourage Physical Activity
If you have visions of your parents rocking peacefully on the front porch, you may want to reevaluate how you see their retirement playing out. According to the National Institute on Aging, there are real benefits to staying active as you grow older. These include:
- Supporting balance
- Lower stress levels
- Maintaining positive sleep quality
- Supporting cognitive function
Whenever possible, encourage participation in activities that provide social interaction with peers. According to a recent clinical analysis, this can reduce isolation and maintain a healthy social life.
4. Give Them Space
While many adults caring for aging parents feel an overwhelming responsibility, you don’t want to become overbearing. Your parents are used to being independent adults in charge of their own decisions; it is up to you to respect that autonomy as long as it is safely possible. Give them space to pursue activities and hobbies they enjoy while keeping a careful eye out from the wings.
5. Provide Tools for Independence
One of the best ways to help support your parents as they navigate this potentially vulnerable life stage is to provide them with tools that enable independence. For example, installing grab bars in bathrooms or other areas where falls are common can help them stay safe and avoid an injury. You can find further tips through agingcare.com
There are varying levels of support that can help seniors live healthy, happy, and independent lives in their homes. Sometimes, something as simple as helping them pick out a smart door lock so they don’t have to fumble with keys is all the support that older adults need. Others may require a weekly house cleaning service or senior lunch deliveries. Assess needs as they change and adapt your strategies so your parents can still have a rewarding and safe life at home.
6. Suggest Planning for the Future
The sooner you have this conversation, the better off you will be. Planning for the future allows older adults to be treated as they want, regardless of their ability to make decisions or express themselves down the road. while every household will have unique requirements, a few common examples of estate planning documents include:
- Living wills
- Healthcare powers of attorney
- Durable powers of attorney
- Wills and trusts
You may also want to talk about long-term care planning and how that can fit into the bigger picture of how your parents see their golden years unfolding. Several insurance products are available that can help reduce the financial burden of in-home or institutionalized care.
By listening to your parents’ concerns, supporting their choices, and offering help where needed, you can help them maintain their independence and dignity as they are again in place.