Do you remember that feeling as a young child when the school bell rang, indicating the conclusion of science and the start of the best part of the day: recess? There was an immense feeling of freedom bounding out onto the playground, leaving behind the pressure of school work for a quick period of unstructured play. Regrettably, for the majority of adults, this is just a happy but distant memory. Play for seniors isn’t usually something that’s considered by many adults. Nevertheless, is it possible, and even worthwhile, to recapture the enjoyment of playing?
We have all heard about helicopter parents, particularly when a daughter or son leaves for college, but what about a helicopter child? Truth be told, we may be guilty of hovering a bit too closely ourselves. Finding that optimal harmony between caring and overstepping our boundaries is not easy.
With over 328 million people residing in the U.S. alone, it is hard to believe that senior loneliness would be so prevalent. And yet of the number of older adults living alone, more than 60% of them report being chronically lonely.
A quick Google search for the word “aging” produces topics such as “coping with aging,” “what you can do about aging,” as well as “the cure to aging.” The pessimistic connotations to aging are, regrettably, so embedded in our society that it is estimated that by 2027, the aging care industry will be worth $83.2 billion. While it’s very easy to get caught up in the issues that may be realized in aging well – health concerns, the passing of family and friends, and cognitive issues – what’s getting lost in the shuffle are the remarkable benefits of growing older.
It’s a conflict that occurs for numerous families: seniors are adamant about wanting to age in place in their own home, while their relatives worry about their safety and well-being. And there’s an argument to be made in both scenarios. Seniors, specifically individuals who live alone, confront multiple risks: falls that could possibly result in significant injury, trouble in maintaining the lifestyle to which they’ve become accustomed as aging progresses, even a susceptibility to scam artists. Nonetheless, senior independence is one of the keys to self-worth.
Identifying a balance that fits the requirements of both sides may be challenging, but there are several important factors to consider that can make a difference.
Let go of ageism. While there is credibility to worries over safety for … Read More »
When it comes to caring for a family member, family dynamics can play a big part in the caregiver’s outlook. For those who have been brought up by loving parents who provided for all their needs, providing the same standard of care may simply be second nature. But what if you’ve been scarred by childhood experiences, determined to keep your distance from difficult family members later in life, simply to end up going back to provide assistance for them in a period of need?
AARP offers some helpful tips for family members who want to conquer old wounds in the interests of providing care:
Set emotional boundaries. It’s possible to give compassionate home care while staying emotionally detached. Just … Read More »
Have you ever walked in to the office or a get-together with friends or family and had a person say to you with great concern, “You really look tired today!” Although you may have been feeling pretty perky before that interaction, without warning you may suddenly actually feel exhausted and rundown. The words we use with each other and the manner by which we interpret them are meaningful. And when speaking with people who have a long-term health concern, it’s very important to thoughtfully think about what to express, and maybe more importantly, what NOT to say, that can help the person feel his or her best.
While we are surely well meaning, there are specific comments which are … Read More »
Of the many responsibilities a family caregiver faces, perhaps one of the more difficult is managing health concerns and knowing what questions to ask the Dr. as your parent’s caregiver. The National Council on Aging estimates that approximately three quarters of all seniors are clinically determined to have at least two chronic illnesses, and are seeing on average of four medical specialists.
Hired Hands Homecare, offering in-home care in Napa, CA and the surrounding communities, offers these simple tips to communicate effectively with those on the senior’s medical team:
Are all of the medications essential? With most older adults taking many medications, you’ll need to keep an in-depth list and review occasionally with the doctor along with the pharmacist, each of whom should be able to make … Read More »
It is quite easy to get swept up in the daily tasks of caregiving for a senior you love. There’s so much to be done, and sometimes it’s just easier and a lot more efficient to do it all on your own, letting the senior relax. After all, our elders have taken care of things for a lifetime; haven’t they earned a break?
The truth however, is that aging with dignity is incredibly necessary to our wellbeing, something that comes from having a sense of purpose and meaning in life. And even though ensuring safety is, without a doubt, our primary concern, there are ways to empower a senior loved one in your care to remain in control whenever possible. For instance:
Work together on projects. While standing … Read More »
If you are responsible for most of the care for elderly parents while your siblings distance themselves from helping, you are not alone. In fact, 50% of all family caregivers are caring for an aging loved one alone, based on a recently available report from AARP.
Understanding why this situation is so typical – and learning what can you do to safeguard your own personal health, which can easily be impacted by providing care for a senior loved one on your own – is critical. Our aging care experts have the answers.
Family members do not recognize there is a need for assistance. It may very well be that from the outside looking in, you have everything covered and running smoothly, and are not in … Read More »