The Ultimate Guide To Caring For Elderly Relatives
Growing old is inevitable and something that can be rather daunting, the way in which we complete tasks and our ability to do many things will become difficult.
It’s the way in which we approach and deal with this situation that will either put us in good stead to embrace it or find it a struggle.
It’s not just the person that requires care that will find it difficult, often families face turmoil when caring for their loved ones and can find it incredibly difficult to deal with and maintain. There are options to get a carer but some will still partake in aspects of caring, here we look at what we class as the ultimate guide to caring for your elderly relatives.
Hire A Carer
Firstly, let’s start with an option that’s available to all if you are struggling to care for your loved one’s yourselves. Hiring personal care professionals can have a number of benefits and will assist in maintaining a good level of care.
There are a number of different options depending on your situation and what level of care is needed, getting a fulltime carer will be the best choice if your loved one needs someone around all the time. They will often live in and be available 24 hours a day for anyone that requires it. The benefits of this come by enabling your elderly relatives to eat well and complete tasks such as washing their clothes and cleaning the house, in certain circumstances personal hygiene care can also be given if required. These are things we take for granted when we are younger and don’t take into account when we are older.
Having a fall when you’re elderly is a scary prospect and will terrify most which is why having a live-in carer will put minds at ease. Being safe in the knowledge that someone is always around to help you up if you fall over will relieve stress and anxiety. Even if you have a part-time carer, you know that someone will be coming to your house once or twice a day.
Part-time carers are for those that don’t need constant support but may struggle with certain tasks. Feeling capable is brilliant if you are but can also be dangerous if you say you’re better than you are, this is why part-time carers are brilliant. You still have a sense of independence but you have someone that pops round for a chat and a helping hand where necessary.
A huge decision to make, taking on the responsibility of caring for your elderly relatives yourself will drastically affect your life and should be thought through thoroughly first. If you have a fulltime job that requires a lot of attention then it might be wise to hire someone, but if you have a job that is flexible and gives you the ability to care then it’s something you can consider.
First, we should be realistic about how we are able to help. Take everything into consideration before making any final decisions and think of every situation that might arise. This is also a decision that should not be made alone, talking to your relative that needs care and involving them in the decisions is hugely important. Realistically, it’s going to affect them more than it will affect you as they will be the one receiving care, make sure you take their feelings into account, and go from there.
Something else to bear in mind is your relatives might initially push away your offer of care, it’s a big decision and they will want what is best for you, even if it means their life is more difficult. Be sensitive to their wants and needs and always try to be as sympathetic as you can.
Something that is often overlooked is the need for emotional support, giving and receiving care isn’t easy and will require more than just physical care. As the caregiver never is frightened to seek support yourself, it’s stressful enough dealing with someone that really needs help, and without having someone to talk to you might find yourself in a position of emotional turmoil. Depression, stress, and anxiety are things we should take seriously, and ignoring any problems you may have can turn into any one of them.
Providing emotional support to those you are caring for is also a necessity, you have no idea what they are going through unless you talk with them and sometimes a conversation is all that is needed. Stay open and keep talking, it’s something that is needed for every human, whether they are old or not.
When it comes to caring for elderly relatives you have a lot of thinking to do first, setting a plan and how to execute it will be essential and never be scared to ask for help. There are professionals for a reason and no one will think any differently of you if care is given by someone else. The most important thing is that your relative is receiving the best possible care they can.