For children who don't see their parents on a daily or even weekly basis, it can be difficult to determine how they are really getting along. Unless you are around your parents often or are a skilled nurse, it can be difficult to recognize declining mental or physical health. As professionals who are dedicated to improving the quality of life for those who are elderly, our Palo Alto home care providers have a few suggestions to help you determine whether your aging parents are doing fine, or may need a little assistance from outside.
Those in their golden years often desire to maintain a level of independence, and therefore sometimes won't tell their children when they need help. The best thing you can do to find out what is really going on is to visit for a couple of days. If your parents live some distance away, plan to stay for a night or two. This will give you a good idea of whether a parent or parents really are in good mental and physical health.
While on your mini-vacation to your parent's house, check out a few things for your own peace of mind. Our San Francisco in-home care professionals suggest:
Take a look around the house (but don't be obvious). Are there piles of dirty clothes in the floor, an inch of dust covering all of the surfaces, a mess on the kitchen counters? These things don't necessarily indicate any medical or health problems, just that your parent's are slowing down and may need a little housekeeping done for them on occasion.
Use whatever excuse you have to use to get your parent to run you to the store, or take you out to eat. Why? You need to check out your parent(s) driving ability. Eyesight, mental clarity, reflexes - all of these things decline at a certain age, which makes driving dangerous. Even though it will be a tough discussion, it may be time to approach the topic of no longer driving.
Don't forget the finances. Are the bills being paid, and do your parent's bank accounts seem to be in order? If you find a drawer full of unpaid bills or look through checking/savings accounts and see unusually large donations or purchases that seem a bit strange, it could indicate someone has taken advantage of your parents. Talk to them about it to see if anything comes to light.
No one wants to grow old, but it happens to all of us. Hopefully your aging parents are in great health both physically and mentally, but if you think they could use a little help - or even a lot of help - call us at Care Indeed. We provide the highest quality in home care services to residents in Palo Alto, San Francisco, and surrounding areas in California.
Home care is derived from the belief that older adults should be able to age at home with the level of care they need to be safe and comfortable.