Caring for senior loved ones in our busy lives
Our lives are overscheduled. Work, appointments, errands, kids’ activities. 24 hours sometimes seems to be too little to fit everything in. For those of us with aging parents, these obligations may impact the time we can spend with them. Remember that our seniors need our time and attention as well. There is nothing that can fully replace the experience of having close relatives care for the elderly.
Why has it become hard to care for our seniors on our own?
We are facing an aging population due to increased longevity, among other factors. According to the Administration on Aging reported by the Family Caregiver Alliance, individuals 85 years and older, are one of the fastest growing segments of the population. his figure is expected to increase to 19.4 million by 2050, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. This means that there could be an increase from 1.6 million to 6.2 million people age 85 or over with severe or moderate memory impairment in 2050. Members of this age group generally require more intense and specific caregiving which must be taken into account.
What’s more, census data reveals that nearly 36 million Americans relocate every year. That is a huge number which vastly influences family structures and relationships. We are not there with our seniors and need extra assistance to help them with daily living. Read on to find some ways on the options on how you can manage your senior loved one’s support system despite your busy schedule.
Family caregiving provides comfort and serenity for elderly
Family is everything. Older people especially, feel most comfortable and “at home” with family members to take care of them.If your schedule allows it, carve out time to visit Mom at home. Include grandkids in contacting their grandparents frequently by phone or online. Choose a communication platform that can bring you closer together.
According to the Family Caregiver Alliance, families provide 80% of the long-term care in the United States. The FCA has provided services to family caregivers of adults with physical and cognitive impairments for over forty years. If you are in this situation, don’t hesitate to check them out for resources and support.
Unfortunately, obstacles such as distance between you and your elderly loved one may make personal caregiving visits hard to organize. Perhaps Mom needs 24 care because of health challenges. What else can be done if family care is not an option for you?
Home care agencies provide an extra boost of security
Sometimes we are not able to provide all the care that our seniors need. Maybe we’re not able to find enough time to dedicate to Mom and Dad. Our seniors may be in need of specific care for mental or physical impairments. If your family would feel more comfortable with an extra pair of hands to help out at home, home care agencies may be the answer!
Home care agencies are a popular choice for families who need that extra amount of security at home while their elderly parent can age in place. For the most part, seniors prefer to stay in their home setting, maintain as much independence as possible, and stay in their neighborhood close to friends and neighbors. Staying at home is important for mental health.
You can choose a professional caregiver depending on the care your senior requires. A licensed medical assistant can provide medical care if needed. A home caregiver can be there when you cannot.
An assisted living facility can provide the security you need
If you’re absent from your seniors’ life for the most part or they need a higher level, comprehensive care, an assisted living facility or ALF may be the best choice. Although seniors may not always be content with this decision, there are many positives in living in a retirement or nursing home. Firstly, staying safe is crucial for seniors who cannot fully take care of themselves. These facilities are built for aging adults. Secondly, seniors have a chance to socialize which combats loneliness and depression, both very common in the senior population.
Statistics at American Senior Communities state that currently, around one million Americans live in some type of senior living community, and that number is expected to double by the year 2030. The need is growing due to massive societal change. ALFs can help provide a new way of caregiving which helps the entire family. Family caregivers frequently face stress and burnout. Furthermore, seniors have access to skilled nursing or rehabilitative care and in turn, families can find comfort in knowing that their loved ones receive all-around quality care.
Maintaining contact regardless of distance helps fight loneliness
In any case, whether your senior lives alone or in a retirement home, loneliness is still a major concern. Our role is to keep the relationship with our seniors alive via phone calls or the Internet. Choosing a good service to connect us easily can be the answer for a more fulfilling life. Maximize your time together. Try a senior-friendly video call application which you can download on your phone or table. Oscar Senior connects seniors to their families by text or video chat. Therefore, it provides an affordable supplementary caregiving option.
Our generation is being pulled in different directions, so it is very easy to lose focus on the needs of our elderly loved ones. Our parents have taken care of us over the years. Now’s the time to return the love and care that we have received. Even if we’re busy there are a number of resources we can turn to in order to help improve the lives of our seniors.