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How to Take Care of Aging Relatives: 6 Tips
How to Take Care of Aging Relatives: 6 Tips
Watching your parents and other loved ones get older and start to struggle is never easy. For the first time, the roles will reverse and it will be your turn to take care of them instead of the other way around.
If you want to assist the ones you love and give back to them, there are countless ways you can help them out. Here are a few things you can do to make their lives easier, more comfortable, and more fulfilling.
Improve Their Space
As you get older, issues with mobility can often arise. Older adults are also more vulnerable to slips and falls. Because of this, it might become important for your loved one’s living space to be improved and modified in order to accommodate them and any changes they might be experiencing.
Some things you might want to do include removing rugs that can be tripped over, adding railings or ramps where it’s hard to step, and making the bathroom safer with walk in tubs, hand railings, and non-slip mats. Some seniors might benefit from a bed rail too, or even assisted seating.
Help Them with Difficult Activities
When your loved one starts getting older, there might be certain tasks and activities that they struggle with, like any strenuous work, driving or errands that might exhaust them.
You could help them out by scheduling one day a week to visit them and help them out with all these tasks. Bath the dog, go to the post office and rehang the curtains that needed to be cleaned. This will help take the pressure off of them and make them feel cared for too.
Take Over Chores and Daily Tasks
Seniors might also begin to struggle with smaller, simpler daily tasks like cleaning and cooking. If you’re able to, helping them out with these tasks will give them a chance to rest.
However, if you don’t have the time to manage all these small tasks (which is completely normal) there are still other ways you could help them. Consider getting them set up with a weekly cleaning service to help them keep their space clean and take some time to batch prep some food for them. Cooking and freezing a few healthy meals packed with nutritious ingredients for them to reheat with no effort will be a great help.
Keep Them Company
Sometimes, simply spending quality time with your elderly relatives will be enough to lift their spirits and make them feel loved and supported. Aging can be an isolating experience, so spending some time together is important.
Regularly schedule days to take them out or simply enjoy some fun activities together. You can spend time together one-on-one or plan big family get-togethers – either option will likely make them extremely happy and boost their mood.
Help Them Stay Busy
Keeping busy as a senior is crucial. After retirement, many older adults suffer from feelings of loss, emptiness, and a lack of fulfillment. Filling up that newfound free time with useful and exciting activities is important, especially as they get older and are able to do less and go out less.
Help them pick up a new hobby that will bring them fulfillment every day. This should be something that they love and enjoy, and also something that they can work on constantly – such as gardening, learning an instrument, caring for a pet, painting, or something similar.
Support Them Emotionally
If you think it’s tough to watch your loved ones get older, imagine how tough it must be to be the one aging. Getting older is difficult – there are changes in your body, health, and lifestyle that you can’t do anything to avoid. It’s frustrating and frightening to go through.
Make sure that your loved ones have a shoulder to cry on. Be there to listen to their fears and frustrations and offer your unwavering support and comfort through it all. This gesture will mean more to them than any physical assistance ever could.
While the journey of aging is tough, it can also be a peaceful and satisfying time. You’ll be able to help provide those feelings to your aging loved ones by offering them your help and support in various ways.
Not feeling alone is one of the keys to living out your golden years feeling fulfilled, so your assistance and presence in the life of your aging relative will help them to make the most of this final period of their life.