When an aging parent does not live close by, determining whether or not they are safe in their environment can pose a problem. Mom or dad may maintain that they are doing well when in fact they are not. They are not necessarily “lying” but rather, they may not want to worry their children, be embarrassed by their changes in abilities, or fear placement in a nursing facility.
As a leading provider of home care in Fairfield, we work with families throughout Connecticut who are concerned about their loved one’s wellbeing at home and have found there are many ways that adult children can evaluate their loved one’s safety, even if they cannot visit frequently. Here are our top three strategies:
- Make the Most of Visits – Even if you cannot visit often, there are a few tell tale signs that should be looked for when you are able to check-in on mom or dad. Is there adequate food in the refrigerator? Are medications properly labeled and stored? Are there fixtures in ill repair? Looking at these things can be a good indicator as to whether or not the senior is safe. Also, the family should pay attention to physical appearance, grooming and even the tidiness of the home. Not keeping up with simple daily chores or tasks may be a sign that outside assistance is needed.
- Get to Know the Neighbors – Neighbors are often the first people to identify that something may not be right with your aging loved one. For many seniors, a neighbor may be a routine source of social interaction and they may be first to know if mom or dad has had a trip, slip or fall. Although visiting may not be frequent, taking the time to call the neighbor and establish rapport can be essential. The adult child should ensure that they have and have the neighbor’s contact information and should stay in regular contact when possible.
- Pay Attention to Details in Communication – Your loved one may not always come right out and say something happened to them or express their concerns. Therefore, you must listen for clues and pay attention to the details. For example, if your parent complains of pain or exhaustion, you should ask direct questions about their health. Otherwise, mom or dad may not be forthcoming. Maintaining regular contact, even via phone and paying attention to these small things can be a dead giveaway for some safety concerns.
If you feel your loved one needs additional help at home and you are unable or unequipped to provide the level of care they need, reach out to Home Care Assistance of Fairfield. Our highly trained hourly and live-in Fairfield caregivers are available 24/7 and can provide assistance with a wide range of activities from light housekeeping and meal preparation to medication reminders and transportation. With a Home Care Assistance caregiver on your side, you can enjoy the peace of mind that comes with knowing a compassionate and highly trained professional is always with your loved one to maximize safety and comfort.
Have other questions about in-home care? Call 203-955-1915 to speak with a Care Manager and schedule a complimentary, no obligation consultation.