Most people have to face the difficult decision about whether to send their elderly to a specialized home, where they would receive proper care or adjust their living area in a way so they are able to stay there as long as possible. For many, the second option is the one that comes with more challenges, but on the other hand is far more humane, since they will be spending time in a comfortable environment they are used to. This article will give you some useful ideas about how to keep your aging parents at home, the longer the possible. Keep reading to find out.
Certain adaptations are mandatory
As they go deeper into old age, the space where they send time needs to be adapted. How you may ask? Here is a list of things to consider:
Creating a senior-friendly environment
The first step an adult child needs to take when it comes to adapting the space for the parents to live in is safety. Everything should be planned in long term, giving safety a priority. It may sound a bit frightening, but if you approach the planning process seriously, and take it to step by step, there are no reasons to be worried. As for how much adaptation will it require, this depends on two things: the current state of the place they live in, and their physical condition.
So, in the next couple of lines, we’ll give you some ideas on what to pay special attention to.
Your parents may now be in good physical condition, but the time may come when they will face movement difficulties, so you might as well adapt to the space now. You want it to be fall-proof, to minimize the risk of serious injuries in case of a fall. Therefore, work on decluttering the space, installing grab bars, and using assistive technological devices – these can be anything that can enable and help their everyday functioning, for example, a stair elevator if walking is difficult or a fall alert device. A good idea is to make sure they wear proper footwear to make walking as comfortable as possible, and not slippery. You‘ll be surprised how these fall-proofing tips will make you sleep better at night, knowing your parents are aging in a safe environment.
Fill the rooms with as much light as possible
One of the things everyone will be facing with old age is losing their sight. With old age, all the muscles in our body grow weaker, including the ones helping our eyesight. An interesting fact is that people in their 60s require three times more light in the room to just be comfortable reading. Hence the importance of bringing as much light into the rooms they spend time in, as possible. Natural light, of course, is always the best, so make sure the windows are not covered or install more if you can. This doesn’t minimize the importance of artificial lighting, so you want to make sure there are enough lamps around the house, and that they can see at night as well. Having a flashlight somewhere near the bedside comes in handy, in cases of power shortages.
Assess their health from time to time
We live in times where we often cannot allocate time to visit on regular basis, so we keep using technology to communicate. This means we’re more likely to video chat than to actually sit and talk. When older people are involved, sitting and talking are important because they can give a hint of whether there is a cognitive decline happening, which is quite normal for old age. This is something very hard to notice over a video call. Therefore, organize a doctor’s visit from time to time to assess the condition of your parents, see if their health is ok, and are there any signs of dementia starting.
Be prepared for emergencies
This is something you always should plan, just like with kids. You need to think about how to act in cases like the fire. A good fire or smoke alarm will come in handy, as well as having enough extinguishers around the house. There are more devices you can use to minimize the danger, such as the stove shut. Research on what are the ones that can make your parent’s home safe.
Make a list of healthcare institutions
Depending on where they live, make a list of all health service providers, such as hospitals, with contacts. This will save you time if there’s an emergency. You’ll know exactly whether there is a facility near you, you can turn to.
Organize home delivery services for anything they need, like groceries, medications, etc.
Have one person in charge of this, if there is a need for transporting them somewhere when you cannot.
Hire a home care service – especially for those who are in need of some kind of therapy.
Luckily, aging at home isn’t as complicated as it was before, as there are quality home care services provided in almost every community. So, you have multiple options to decide on, when it comes to home care. Either you can hire someone to be a personal care provider and live with your parents, or organize a service in a way where they will be paying regular visits according to the schedule you create. There are various packages available for such services, to see what are your other options, visit https://absolutecarehealth.com.au/home-care-packages/ .
Even though, as we’ve already mentioned, compared to the past it is a lot easier now, it doesn’t mean it is something that can be organized in a couple of days. Such decisions require a lot of planning, and monitoring once the services start. As you could have already concluded from what we wrote in this article. But remember, choosing to keep your parents at home, will result in them having a much happier life.