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Time to Hang Up the Car Keys

As we age our ability to safely drive declines. As such, many factors need to be considered when our senior loved ones are hitting the road. If it’s time to hang up the car keys it’s important to approach the topic sensitively. He/she may feel a loss of freedom, so make sure to assess their condition and explain your concerns.

The factors to consider when it is time to hang up the car keys include:

If your loved one shows any of the following symptoms:

  • Impaired vision.
  • Hearing loss.
  • Side-effects from medication, such as drowsiness.
  • Delayed reaction time.
  • Loss of memory.
  • Inability to focus.
  • Decline in emotional and/or mental health.
  • Joint pain or discomfort that could slow braking.

Alternatives to a senior driving him/herself include:

Hiring a caregiver. Comprehensive Home Care gladly runs errands and transports our clients to and from appointments and events.

Taxi/ride-sharing service. Taxis and ride-sharing options are becoming more and more accessible for those who need an extra hand. Research the best option in your senior loved one’s area.

Public transportation. There are many options for public transportation designed for the elderly. Type the zip code in ElderCareLocator to find the local transportation programs.

Friends, family members, and neighbors. Have a discussion with friends and family members to see if they can provide transportation, even just for appointments.

Walking or bicycling. If your senior loved one’s health permits, walking or bicycling may be a great option for getting around as it provides exercise, saves money, and provides a sense of freedom.

Comprehensive Home Care is here to help! We provide transportation for our clients, so you can rest assured that he/she is safe and well taken care of. We can also provide advice on the best way to approach the topic with your loved one. Call us today at 704-333-5214 or contact us online to learn more.

Is it Just a Case of the Blues?

It is common to deal with sleep problems, fatigue, and/or loss of appetite in later years and often they’re written off as causes of aging. Yet for around 8 million adults over age 65, these symptoms could be suggestive of mental illness.

Mental illness in seniors usually goes unnoticed for a variety of reasons. A small percentage of adults age 65 and over who potentially have a mental illness actually receive treatment. There’s a stigma that comes with admitting to and searching for help for mental and emotional concerns. For some individuals, the assumption is that the symptoms of mental illness and aging go together so the signs are dismissed. In other cases, mental illness signs mirror medication side effects. 

Watch for any of the following types of behaviors in a loved one that may suggest a mental illness:

  • Anxiousness
  • Personality or mood changes
  • Changes in the desire for formerly enjoyed activities
  • Sleeping too much or too little
  • Alterations in eating patterns
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Memory -loss
  • Depression

If any of these signs are present it’s important to seek medical help. Talk to a primary care physician who can recommend the best medication and/or therapeutic options to consider.

Comprehensive Home Care can also help by escorting the senior to medical appointments and counseling sessions, picking up prescriptions and providing reminders. We can also serve as a caring companion to share in conversations and pick up on any changes that could indicate the necessity for further assistance. Contact Comprehensive Home Care, top providers of the highest quality companion care Charlotte has to offer, by calling us at 704-333-5214 or use our contact form to find out more.

Read about how another condition, insomnia, affects the elderly.

Caring for Older Parents? Ask These Questions Before They Move In

Probably the most admirable decision an adult can make is to open up their house to an older parent. Our parents took care of us, so it seems obvious to return the favor if they need a safe place to live. However, there are a number of things to consider when caring for older parents. 

Check out these key questions to ask when caring for older parents and deciding where they should live:


 

Is there sufficient space?

For example, consider how making room for the parent can lead to a change in another family member’s accommodations.

Is the home safe and efficient for the elderly’s needs?

Walk through your home and try to see it through the viewpoint of your parent. Are pathways clear between the senior’s bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, etc.? Should you install grab bars, a ramp, or other home care equipment?

Will someone be home each day?

Isolation and the dangers of being left alone will still be a problem if you and your spouse work outside the home.

Is everyone completely agreeable with the plan?

While you may be thoroughly convinced of your senior parent’s new living arrangements, feelings of reluctance, or resentment on the part a family member can create stress.

Are you prepared to handle increasing care needs?

While they may just need a little help currently, disease progression and the normal frailties associated with aging will change the amount of care needed. Think about the potential difficulties.

Is your parent okay with this decision?

Giving up status as “head of the household” is extremely challenging for some seniors. It takes careful planning to help your parent maintain self-esteem, autonomy, and a sense of control.

If you’re feeling uncertain about your ability to look after your loved one, consider the addition of a home care provider, such as a Comprehensive Home Care specialist. Our knowledgeable caregivers partner with families to ensure your loved one stays safe and can thrive inside their homes. Whether the care involves a few hours each week of companionship to promote socialization, personal care assistance for safe bathing and dressing, help with household chores and meal preparation, or round-the-clock, live-in care. We provide a free in-home consultation to learn about your loved one and suggest a strategy of care to handle all concerns. Call us today at 704-333-5214 or contact us online to find out more about our care services.

Check out Planning a Family Meeting to Discuss Home Care on tips to discuss the change with your family.