Caring for the elderly is one of the most fulfilling and rewarding tasks you can do. However, most of you may also attest that senior care is one of the toughest tasks you’ll ever have. That’s why people who often care for older people, like caregivers, are at risk for serious health conditions, stress, and burnout. When you take care of seniors, they’ll mostly depend on you to:
- Prepare their meals.
- Take them to the bath.
- Walk with them as exercise.
- Assisting them in their mobility issues.
While the task may be stressful for you, remember that it’s also not easy for them to suddenly become dependent on you or other people for their welfare.
If you’re new to caring for your elderly loved ones, you need to familiarize yourself with tips on how to provide them the best care possible. Read on below for six tips in caring for the elderly:
Taking care of your elderly family can be emotionally complex and challenging, especially if you’re a busy person. While there may be some tasks that you can handle, others can be too impossible as you have your own errands and responsibilities to tackle as well. This is when you’ll realize that you need to hire a helper or a caretaker.
A caretaker can help you fulfill some tasks like assisting the elderly in the bath, housekeeping, and other errands you’d want them to do. If you can’t hire someone you personally know, you can always check for referrals or go to a licensed elderly home care provider such as Family First Home Care.
Caring For The Elderly – Make Modifications In The House
If you’re planning to take care of your senior parents or grandparents in the house, you’ll need to make the necessary changes in the house. Whether small or big, these changes can help you minimize any trouble or accidents in the house. Some of these changes may include:
- Removing excess furniture in the house
- Installing grab bars in the shower and toilet
- Hiding any loose wires on the floor
- Placing non-skid mats on the slippery parts of the floor
- Regularly removing the clutter around the house and corridors
- Installing a stairlift
- Eliminating carpet runners
The list goes on and on. As you make changes, make sure these suit their needs as this is almost like baby-proofing a house.
Keep Them Engaged In Physical Activities
Regular exercise is essential for seniors. As they age, their immune system will start to weaken and deteriorate. To ensure that their immune system is in top shape, encouraging them to do more physical activities may help. If they were sporty during their younger years, you might not have a hard time enrolling them in senior sports clubs nearby. Any exercise will do, as long as they don’t stop moving. It can be tennis, golf, or even something simple as signing up for a walking group. The more they spend time outdoors, the better they’ll feel about themselves and their health.
Caring For The Elderly – Assist Them With Their Medications
Understandably, seniors will slowly lose the quality of their eyesight, making it harder to read words, letters, and of course, medicine labels. Aside from that, their memory ability will also decline, leading them to become forgetful about their medicines or the doses they must take. Thus, keep track of their medications. If you’re frequently around, include it in your responsibility to remind them of their medicines.
If you’re not always around, you can label their medicines in bold letters with clear instructions, then place these in a reachable drawer so that they can easily locate these and avoid mixing these up with other drugs.
Have Fun Spending Time With Them
Don’t forget to have fun taking care of your senior loved ones. Don’t be too uptight with them or with the situation. They might already be stressed with the pain and distress they’re going through as they age. So, add color to their day by spending quality time with your senior loved ones. You can watch Netflix with them while you both enjoy your cup of tea. Bring out old pictures and enjoy talking about those memories. Tell them jokes and make them laugh. A good laugh will certainly brighten their day and uplift their spirits.
Don’t Forget About Self-Care
Most importantly, as you take care of the elderly, don’t forget about yourself. You can only give them the best care possible if you’re also healthy and perfectly capable of looking after them. So, take a break and have fun with yourself. Eat well, get a massage, hang out with your friends, and exercise. These activities will help you pull yourself together and recharge you before you return to your elder loved ones the next day.
Don’t turn your backs on your senior parents or grandparents. Remember that they also loved and cared for you way back during your younger years, so now it’s your turn to look after them. You’ll be happy that you did your very best to make sure their retirement and senior years were spent beautifully and happily.