Knowing how to support your parents as they get older can be a serious challenge. It is natural for elderly people to find certain tasks more strenuous, and older parents are likely to need your care and assistance. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to help your elderly parents stay safe, healthy, and happy. Here are some tips on how to support aging parents:
Discuss your parent’s needs
The first step is to sit down as a family and have a conversation about your parent’s needs. Encourage your parents to be honest and discuss their needs openly. Keep in mind that your parents may resist your support in the beginning. Be prepared for this and bring up the topic of elderly care sensitively.
At some point, you may need to take control of your parent’s finances and affairs due to age or health conditions. You can contact specialist solicitors if you have concerns about whether an elderly parent can manage their affairs and finances. Experts at Jordans Solicitors [Court of Protection Birmingham] explain how they can “assist if a loved one no longer has the mental capacity to make important decisions.” You should have an elderly care plan in place to ensure that your parent’s needs are met as they get older.
Offer to support their daily activities
It is natural for older people to find activities more difficult, particularly if they develop a health condition that affects their mobility. You may notice that an elderly parent struggles to do household chores or run errands, for example.
If you live nearby, then you could assist your aging parents by helping them with housework, doing their weekly grocery shop, or dropping off home-cooked meals. If you are unable to provide regular support, then you could discuss hiring a visiting carer. A professional carer can visit your parents and assist with daily activities. This will enable your parents to maintain a good quality of life and remain living at home safely and comfortably.
Encourage them to be active
Leading an active lifestyle can help elderly people maintain good health and lower the risk of age-related illnesses like heart disease and strokes. You can encourage your elderly parents to be more active by suggesting senior-friendly exercises like walking, dancing, or water aerobics.
Offering to exercise together can get your parents moving and increase their level of activity. It can also be a great way to bond and strengthen your parent-child relationship. Check out this article by Good Housekeeping for more tips on how to help elderly people become more active.
Keep in regular contact
Senior loneliness is a serious issue in the UK. A recent report by Age UK found that more than one million elderly people regularly go a month or more without speaking to anyone. Chronic loneliness can have a huge impact on an elderly person’s mental health and put them at risk of numerous medical conditions. Make an effort to stay in regular contact with your elderly parents, especially if you have a parent who lives alone.