Your family needs to be involved in your parents’ elder care goals. Whether they want you and your siblings to help out from time to time or prefer daily home care services, it’s important to have a conversation about your parents’ current and future needs.
The reason you need to do this as a family is to make sure everyone is on the same page. If there are disagreements, it’s best to talk them over and find a solution. You may not be able to completely agree on everything, but it’s important that you try. Too much family discord can add stress that your parents don’t need.
What Should You Talk About?
During a family meeting, bring a checklist of the activities of daily living and instrumental activities of daily living. Go over them as a family and see what your parents do well independently and where others have been helping out. See if there’s a reason why they need help. Medication side effects may cause dizziness that has your parents avoiding certain tasks. A change to the medications could be all that’s needed.
Every month or two, get back together and see how things are going. If your parents are finding there are other areas where they could use help, add those to a list of tasks others help with.
Another reason for family meetings is to judge your parents’ physical and emotional health. Those who spend the most time with your mom or dad will have great insight. Depression is especially important to watch for. When seniors are diagnosed with a chronic health condition, depression can become a problem. The same is true if your mom or dad are isolated and feeling lonely.
How Do You Hold a Family Meeting When Family Members Live in Different Areas?
When you and your siblings don’t live close by, family meetings may be harder to arrange. Use the internet to your advantage. Through services like Skype, Facebook Messenger, or Google Hangout, you can involve family who lives farther away. Set a time for a group video chat that’s convenient for everyone.
Get together regularly with your siblings and parents to talk about the elder care services that would benefit them. If your parents are hesitant to get help at home, start them off with just a few hours a week and increase as they get used to it. Call an elder care agency with your parents’ questions and to find out rates.
If you or an aging loved one are considering elder care in Monroe, NJ, please contact the caring staff at Care Street Home Care Serving Somerset and Middlesex/Union Counties today. Call (732) 607-8870.
Dr. Shelly, as he is fondly known, has served as an Alzheimer’s Support Group Facilitator in Mercer County and is a Certified Dementia Instructor. Knowledgeable, compassionate, and unusually devoted, his guidance is crucial in helping families understand their options and render decisions for their loved ones’ care plan. Dr. Shelly’s extensive experience, sincere and pleasant demeanor, and professional affiliations have made him a vital asset to Care Street.