Decisions Can Be Tricky and Emotional Regarding Senior Care

Decisions that concern the care of your aging parents can often be tricky and emotional. Each family will have its own solutions in regard to what’s best for them and their loved ones.

Your family may decide a move to a senior housing facility works because your aging parent no longer needs so much space or cannot manage the home. Or you decide your aging parent requires hands-on senior care in a long-term care facility.

In the case of long-distance caregivers, the notion of moving can seem like a solution to the problem of not being close enough to help. For some caregivers, moving a sick or aging parent to their own home or community can be a viable alternative. In other cases, an adult child moves back to the parent’s home to become the primary caregiver. Keep in mind that leaving a home, community, and familiar medical care can be very disruptive and difficult for your aging parents or aging relative.

Older adults and their families have some choices when it comes to deciding where to live, but these choices can be limited by factors such as illness, financial resources, and personal preferences. Making a decision that is best for your aging parent and making that decision with your aging parent can be difficult. Try to learn as much as you can about possible senior housing options.

Older adults, or those with serious illness, can:
· stay in their own home, or move to a smaller one,
· move to an assisted living facility or retirement community,
· move to a long-term care facility for seniors, or
· move in with another family member.

Experts advise families to think carefully before moving an aging adult into an adult child’s home. Consider the following issues before deciding whether or not to move your aging parent to your home:

1. Evaluate Your Aging Parent’s Needs

Evaluate whether your aging parent needs constant supervision or assistance throughout the day, and consider how this will be provided.

2. Identify Activities For Your Aging loved one

Identify which activities of daily living (eating, bathing, getting to the toilet) your aging parent can perform independently.

3. Know Your Caregiving Capabilities
· Determine your comfort level for providing personal care such as bathing or changing an adult diaper.
· Take an honest look at your health and physical abilities, and decide if you are able to provide care for your aging parent. If not, you might want to look into hiring a good CAREgiver for your aging parent.

4. Familiarize Yourself With Your Aging Parent’s Medical Condition
· Expect changes in your parent’s medical or cognitive condition.
· Consider the type of medical care your parent needs and find out if appropriate doctors and services are available in your community.

5. Know Your Senior Housing and Availability of Senior Care Homes
· Explore the availability of senior services such as a friendly visitor, in-home care, or adult day services.
· Investigate back-up senior care options if living with your parent does not work or is not your choice.

Talk to your aging parent regarding their situation, before deciding on whether to move your aging parent to a senior housing such as assisted living, nursing home or other senior care homes. Remember, it’s important that your aging parent is in the decision-making process. It is their life after-all.

To learn more about senior care options for your parents or aging relative

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