As our parents grow older, we want them to enjoy as much freedom and independence as possible. But at some point, we all face the stark reality that our senior parents simply can’t take care of themselves as they once did. If you ask them in a loving way about that fact, denial usually results.
Quite honestly, it’s a challenge to accurately determine when your aging loved one has reached a time when they can’t comfortably live on their own without outside caregiver assistance. So how exactly will you know when they’ve reached that point where senior care is needed?
To answer that important question, here are several signs to look for when deciding if in-home senior care is needed.
Their House Isn’t Being Kept Up
Most retired people keep their homes immaculate, especially their yards. Let’s say the last couple of times you stopped by your parents’ house something just didn’t look right. Not keeping up with housework and outside chores is an indication something is up with mom, dad, or both. Here’s what to look for:
- Unwashed clothes piled up
- Dirty dishes stacked up in the kitchen
- Appliances that aren’t working
- Inside of the home is cluttered, dirty, and disorganized
- An empty fridge or spoiled food inside
- Stacks of unopened mail or unread newspapers lying around
- Garbage not getting taken out
- House’s exterior has peeling paint
- Yard not being maintained like before
- Bad odors inside the house
If your parent recently lost their spouse, they may be experiencing depression leading to apathy about completing their daily chores. In any event, when you start noticing a pattern of unusually poor home upkeep, you may want to consider some senior care for your loved one.
Their Health Is Noticeably Worse
Other red flags to consider when you have an aging relative are their mental acuity and physical health. Is their method of dress uncharacteristically disheveled? Do they seem to be frequently forgetting important things like bill paying, when to take their medications, and appointments? In addition to those cues, here are some other signs:
- Unexplained bruises
- Mood swings or overall mood changes
- Poor personal hygiene
- Trouble walking, especially on stairs
- Difficulty getting up from a seated position
- Dramatic weight loss
- Slow recovery time from an acute illness like the flu or a cold
- Unexplained dents or scratches on their car
- Confusion when trying to perform once-simple tasks
If your loved one just doesn’t seem to be as generally happy, healthy, or mentally sharp as they once were, it may be time to consider some senior care in an effort to keep them in their home.
Temporary Factors That May Require Senior Care
There are other short-term factors creating a situation where your aging family member will need some caregiving, such as recovering from a serious fall or having surgery. Especially when your loved one lives alone, some at-home care may be needed to assist them with daily activities like cooking, bathing, housekeeping, toileting, taking their medications, and more.
This senior care could be temporary until they’re up and on their feet again, or it may end up being a long-term commitment to ensure your aging loved one’s quality of life remains good.
In-Home Senior Care Available When You Need It in South Bend, IN
When your aging loved one exhibits signs that they need some outside assistance for carrying out daily activities, you may face resistance from them. Sit down and explain how much you love and care about them, and further how you would like to help them stay at home. Once they’ve agreed to accept some in-home caregiving, the next step is to decide who will provide that senior care. One of the options available is professional in-home care through an agency.
Home care providers offer a wide range of senior care services, including cooking, bathing, housekeeping, and transportation. And, the frequency and duration of the caregiving visits can be tailored to your family member’s needs. To learn more about your options when your aging loved one needs senior care, or to find reliable in-home care providers in the Granger, Osceola, Mishawaka, and greater South Bend areas of Indiana, please reach out to us at Senior1Care of South Bend.