Do your older parents live at home alone? Are they beginning to need more help?
If you’re like most adult children of older loved ones, the questions don’t end there.
You may be asking yourself…
At the end of the day, the follow-up question may be whether it’s time to consider different living options.
If the answer is yes, there’s an alternative that can provide everything your loved ones will need and put your mind at rest:
An assisted living community.
If your parents can live independently but could use a helping hand with the basic daily tasks, an assisted living community could be the perfect fit.
Designed to support the basic challenges that may arrive with the years, assisted living encourages residents to remain as self-sufficient as possible.
They not only provide private residences, meals and help with activities such as dressing, bathing and grooming, but they also offer the opportunity to live an active and social life.
Evidence of these 5 signs may clarify whether remaining at home is still the best environment for your parents.
Do they need increasing assistance with the tasks of daily living?
Are your parents struggling with dressing or grooming? Are their clothes in disrepair or are they wearing the same outfit several days in a row? Are they able to bathe regularly?
You may notice the mail piling up or there might be a stack of unpaid bills which typically signal they’re not able to keep up with their finances or bill paying.
Depending on the availability of family and whether in-home services are utilized, assistance may be obtained. However, your parents likely won’t have access to help 24/7.
Are they eating well?
Good nutrition plays a vital role in aging well. Are your parents still able to plan, shop and prepare meals? If not, they might be skipping meals or substituting with processed foods.
Signs to look for include loss or gain of weight or vague answers when asked what they had for lunch or dinner. Their cabinets may be nearly bare and only have few or expired items in their refrigerator.
You may find local programs that provide meals or contract with an in-home service that assists with cooking. However, not all days or meals will be covered.
Can they make needed home repairs or hire someone to do the job? Do they keep up with outside projects such as landscaping, mowing the lawn or shoveling the snow?
How does the home’s interior look? Is it tidy or cluttered? Are the dishes being done or accumulating in the sink? Do you see clothes, papers or other objects in growing piles?
Home care: Depending on the availability of family, friends or in-home care, these services may handle what’s needed.
Do your parents sound lonely when you talk to them? Try to understand if they’ve been seeing friends, attending social events or are able to remain engaged in the community.
Both loneliness and social isolation can be extremely detrimental to their health. If it appears they’re not leaving their home often or are becoming isolated from others, immediate steps should be taken.
Home care: In-home services often offer companionship visits. While helpful, they may not take the place of friendships. Since most families don’t contract for assistance 24 hours a day, there may still be several lonely hours to fill.
As your parents grow older, they may begin to have more mobility challenges, which can often signal that additional help is needed. Are they falling more or finding it increasingly difficult to get into and out of a bathtub?
Is their home designed to be age-friendly? If they need to climb stairs to get into the house or to their bedroom or laundry room, can they do this safely?
Home care: While in-home services are beneficial in providing assistance, there may still be many hours your parents will be alone.
One sign often overlooked in-home care is the health and well-being of the parents who are serving in the caregiver role for their spouses. If their physical and emotional health, as well as stamina, begin to decline, they may no longer be able to provide the same level of care.
Is assisted living the right solution for your family? Consider how the following benefits might match up to support your parents:
If you’re considering assisted living for your parents, we hope you will visit one of our Ingleside communities. We believe you’ll find it’s even easier for your loved ones to live an enriched life when they take advantage of all the benefits we offer, including:
For information on Ingleside’s Westminster at Lake Ridge senior living community located in Lake Ridge, Virginia, please call (703) 420-7105 with questions or to schedule a personalized tour today.
For information on Ingleside at King Farm senior living community located in Rockville, Maryland, please call (240) 414-8557 with questions or to schedule a personalized tour today.
For information on Ingleside at Rock Creek senior living community located in Washington, DC, please call (202) 846-2651with questions or to schedule a personalized tour today.