As individuals, we like to lead self-dependent lives where we are able to make our own decisions and look after our own welfare. As age catches up, however, many of us will turn to loved ones or professional companion care for assistance with daily needs and health.
The transition can be tough, both physically and mentally, for everyone involved. In this article, we’re sharing seven insights we’ve gathered from our experience providing elderly companion care in Oakville.
1. Be Sensitive to What Seniors Are Going Through
From being completely independent to relying on someone else to get through the day is not easy. A Standford study found about 40% of seniors need some level of assistance to meet their daily needs.
You need to be mindful about how you provide care, ensuring you’re being patient and loving. It’s tough enough for them to ask for a friend at home, and it’ll become tougher if you appear agitated or rushed.
2. Make Frequent Visits
Social interaction is one of the easiest ways to keep seniors happy and engaged. This is why you should make it a priority to drop in regularly. Use your visits to check if the living space is accessible, if it needs cleaning, or if anything needs to be repaired.
It’s also a good time to check if their food shelves are stocked, laundry is done, and other chores are completed. If you notice your senior is not keeping up with their upkeep, it could be a sign of a medical ailment or that maybe it’s time to call elderly home care.
3. Check if Medicines are Stocked Up
Medication non-compliance is a big problem as people get older. It’s estimated anywhere between 40-75% of seniors neglect to take prescribed medication.
Getting a pillbox with compartments for AM and PM doses is a remarkably effective solution as it makes it easy for the senior to remember and find the right medications. Also, check if your senior is exhibiting any side effects or symptoms; changes in condition can suggest they may not be taking their medication or overdosing.
4. Get Help!
You want to care for your loved one, but you’re unable to find time to do it. There’s no shame in that. Managing your own daily activities and providing elderly home care can be challenging, especially if you’re juggling multiple jobs or children of your own.
Hiring a ‘friend at home’ or elderly companion can help you take the load off your shoulders and improve the senior’s care. Make sure you only go through a licensed, reputed agency.
5. Ensure the Home is Safe
Did you not modify the house as your loved one became older? The home may appear perfectly accessible to you (and possibly even to the senior), but it will gradually become less safe and accessible as time goes on.
Take the time to install modifications, such as:
- Installing grab bars and handrails in the bathroom
- Replacing the toilet to a raised toilet
- Add ramps to make the space wheelchair-friendly
- Install nightlights (preferably automatic ones) around the house
These are just a few things you can do. For a more comprehensive checklist of what you can do, talk to an experienced care provider.
6. Discuss Finances and Paperwork
Finances, power of attorneys, property ownership – these are not easy conversations to have with a loved one, but the longer you put them off, the greater the chances something will get missed.
Try to have open, even if infrequent, discussions about their finances and if it’s time for them to hand over some of the administrative responsibilities. Be gentle; these conversations will be tough for both of you but can bring a lot of peace of mind.
7. Taking Care of Yourself
Who’s taking care of you when you’re taking care of everyone else? Burnout is a real problem in senior care, which is why so many people opt for companion care in Oshawa. It’s a great way to ensure the quality of life for the seniors while still allowing you to spend quality time with them.
Talk to us today about how our elderly companions in Oakville can help seniors live self-dependent, safe, and happy lives at home.