Caring For Aging Parents

Dependent upon your circumstances, health and ability of your parent(s), and their willingness or lack thereof to accept assistance (or not), the optimal way for you to get involved may differ. You could take on some responsibilities yourself or seek professional services – either in-home or at a facility – however regardless of this, it’s vitally important that you educate yourself so you fully comprehend their situation.

If your elderly parent suffers from osteoporosis and limited mobility prevents them from leaving the house without assistance, in-home physical therapy could be an ideal solution. Conversely, those affected by dementia could benefit from medication management or visits with a geriatric specialist.

Many aging parents may initially be reluctant to admit they need assistance, particularly if their children are distant. Geriatrician Hillary Lum suggests approaching this topic with patience and compassion by discussing daily routines with the person concerned; ask questions like, “How were your driving conditions today?” and “Have any neighbors noticed any issues with mobility issues in your area?”.

Once your parents know you care for them, they may allow you to assume some responsibilities for themselves. At the same time, adults in such circumstances should remain mindful of their own obligations while making sure to pursue activities that give their lives meaning.