November is National Family Caregivers Month. During this time, it’s a good time to sit down with the family to have a conversation about family caregivers and the roles different family members can fill. This conversation needs to start with your mom.
It’s a good time to sit down with your elderly mom and ask these three questions.
Does She Notice Her Abilities Changing?
Does your mom notice her abilities changing? Is it harder for her to carry a laundry hamper down to a basement laundry room? When she stands up, do her hips, knees, or ankles hurt from the beginnings of arthritis? Is her vision worsening and making it harder for her to drive or read fine print?
When abilities change, there may come a time she needs help with activities of daily living. She just can’t get to the laundry room, so she doesn’t bother doing laundry until someone is free to carry her baskets for her. She wears dirty clothes repeatedly instead. She can’t chop ingredients for healthy meals, so she’s relying heavily on takeout meals instead.
She fell and didn’t want to admit it. She’s been hesitant to go down her deck steps ever since. She forgets if she’s taken her medications and worries that something is wrong, but the fear keeps her from speaking up. These are all concerns she needs to discuss and decide if caregivers would help her age at home.
What Are Her Goals for Aging?
A year, five years, or even a decade from now, where does your mom want to be? Has she dreamed of returning to her hometown or does she love her current neighborhood and never want to leave? This can impact whether aging at home is best or if she should downsize to a smaller home for retirement first and then hire elder care providers.
What Qualities Would She Want Caregivers to Have?
If your mom needed a caregiver’s help, what qualities would she want? For example, your mom can be a little sarcastic. Some people don’t get her sarcasm as being her attempt at humor and get insulted. She prefers a caregiver who understands sarcasm.
Your mom may want someone who isn’t afraid to stray from a daily routine. She may prefer caregivers who stick to a schedule. You need to find out what she really wants from elder care providers who come to her home.
Take time to have a conversation with your parents and siblings about family caregiving. Your mom’s input needs to be a big part of this discussion. By asking questions and getting her honest answers, you’ll have the answers you need to get started hiring elder care providers.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Elder Care Services in Rochester NY, contact the caring staff at Caring Hearts of Rochester today! Serving Rochester, Pittsford, Greece, Webster, Canandaigua, Fairport, Perinton, Penfield, Brighton, Henrietta and surrounding communities. Call 585-245-0134.
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