Different Ways to Care for Your Aging Parents
As your parents age, it’s essential to find them care that caters to their specific needs while keeping them as involved as possible in the decision-making process. There are many different care options, from assisted living to a nursing home to senior home care in Los Angeles. Deciding which one is best for your aging parents is extremely important and can be a very stressful process, but it doesn’t have to be difficult. Follow these easy steps when deciding how to care for your aging parents to maintain a great relationship with them while still having confidence they’ll get what they need to maintain a high quality of life at all times.
Keep Open Communication
It is important that you communicate to your parents that you are not looking to take them away from their home, drop them off at their nursing home and leave them with no choice in the matter. It is important that your parents know that they are involved in the process and their opinion is valued. They will want to have a say in how they spend their golden years, and that opinion should be respected. They may be getting older, but they still deserve to have a say in the decision about their own care.
Even if your parents aren’t in need of a great deal of care now, that could change quicker than you might think. It’s best to be prepared so you know what to do when their need for help increases. If you notice your parents don’t get around as well as they used to or take a lot more time to do tasks that used to be easy for them, you should consider making a care plan together.
Call a family meeting with your parents as well as any siblings you have so you’re all on the same page. It may be awkward at first, but a little discomfort is a small price to pay for the overall well-being of your parents. You will also need to go over finances, their retirement fund, and who is willing to help if necessary.
Prepare yourself for potentially difficult and emotional conversations, but remember that it’s not selfish to get professional help instead of sacrificing your time to help your loved one. Your parents likely want you to have a full life without worrying about their every single need. When you go with a professional, you can be confident the caretakers are well-trained and equipped for any needs that may arise while genuinely caring about your mom or dad as a person.
Determine Specific Wants and Needs
If either of your parents have a serious or complex medical condition, a nursing home with access to 24-hour medical care may be necessary. However, in most cases, generally healthy elderly individuals want to stick with what’s familiar to them. At your family discussion, it is important to ask your parents what they want out of care. Do they want to stay in their comfortable home and have the care come to them when they need it? Do they want to move to another home closer to you or another one of their children? Do they want to move into an assisted living facility and be around other seniors?
Ask your parents to talk about their ideal situation and take their preferences into account while also considering their current abilities. Can they still drive safely to the grocery store? Cook their own (healthy) food? Take care of their hygiene needs? If they struggle with these tasks but still desire to remain at home, in-home care is a great option. A highly qualified caretaker will come to them as much or as little as needed.
Even if they can still do most things for themselves but need just a little help here and there, in-home care can be used for hours at a time or even 30 minutes. You can have peace of mind knowing someone is always available to come to them in a time of need if you have work and other responsibilities, and especially if you don’t live near them.
Assisted living is also an option where caretakers are immediately available around the clock, but some seniors may feel held hostage or that they’re being ripped away from their former life. If they’re still able to do some everyday tasks independently and aren’t a risk to themselves, it’s not necessary for them to leave their home.
Vet Local Companies
Once you have determined the best course of action together, the next step is to research local companies to find the best match. Whether you go with assisted living or in-home care in Los Angeles, make sure the caregivers are highly trained and trustworthy to take care of your loved ones. From first aid training to the ability to cook healthy meals, the best companies train their caregivers to safely care for your parents while also providing loving companionship.
If you go with in-home care, make sure the caregivers have accountability to provide superb care—specifically that they’re monitored occasionally by supervisors and rated by clients to ensure they’re motivated to always give the best care possible.
If your mom or dad has a specific condition, make sure the caretaker(s) are well-equipped to attend to their needs. When you reach out to local assisted living facilities or senior home care providers, it is imperative to ask what the caretakers are specifically trained in and questions based on your loved one’s medical needs.
Make an Informed Decision
When you find a provider that meets all your requirements, don’t hesitate to take the next steps. Quality, qualified care is of upmost importance in the later stages of your parents’ lives, and there’s no time to wait.
Of the three main choices for senior care: nursing home, assisted living, and in-home care, the best option is the one where they will be happiest and best served according to their needs. If you’re open with each other about the care desires and needs, the process will go much more smoothly than if you constantly avoid the elephant in the room. Your parents deserve happiness; help them get it!