The senior years can be a time filled with hardships that interfere with emotional wellbeing, which can lead to more serious health concerns. For this reason, family caregivers should be alert for the following signs their elderly loved ones are unhappy.
1. A Recent Loss
It’s normal to grieve after losing a friend or spouse. However, grief usually still involves some fluctuation between sadness and happiness. If your loved one is having difficulty moving past the loss, he or she may need additional support. Suggest your loved one speak with a professional grief counselor, and make sure there’s someone who can visit once a day to see how he or she is feeling.
2. A New Health Diagnosis
It’s also common for seniors to experience changes in health that interfere with their happiness. Though some seniors may just need time to adjust to their new health status, others may have conditions that jeopardize their happiness. For example, dementia can generate mood changes that lead to depression. Provide your loved one with assistance to help with tasks that may be frustrating, or hire a professional caregiver to help.
The fear of losing their independence can be especially stressful for seniors who have been diagnosed with dementia. Aging in place can present a few challenges for seniors living with dementia. However, they can still live independently at home with the help of professional dementia care. Orlando families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide their elderly loved ones with mental and social stimulation, timely medication reminders, assistance with meal prep, and much more. Our caregivers are available around the clock to help your loved one live a happier and healthier life.
3. Alcohol Abuse
People often worry about teenagers abusing drugs and alcohol. However, many seniors begin to drink more often as a way to handle negative emotions. Spending days alone is bad for anyone’s emotional health, and seniors sometimes try to cover up their feelings of loneliness by turning to alcohol. Your loved one may be at risk of alcohol misuse if he or she has had an addiction in the past or has recently sustained a loss. Family members should be alert for signs of problem drinking, such as having a drink early in the day or hiding bottles around the home.
Make sure to surround your loved one with multiple opportunities to talk to other people to prevent this issue. Professional caregivers and counselors are options for helping your loved one learn how to manage the emotional aspects of living alone. If your loved one does abuse alcohol, it’s important to arrange for him or her to seek treatment. For example, he or she may need transportation to attend support group meetings.
If your aging loved one needs help managing everyday tasks or encouragement to adopt healthier lifestyle choices, turn to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of at-home care. Home Care Assistance provides professional in-home caregivers around the clock to help seniors live longer, happier, and healthier lives.
4. Social Isolation
Your loved one needs to talk to people regularly to maintain the ability to think and communicate effectively. Socialization is important for everyone’s happiness, and seniors need someone they can talk to about life’s daily events. Seniors who stop talking to other people often lose their cognitive abilities faster than those who socialize. Provide your loved one with opportunities to talk to other people, and encourage him or her to learn new things. Make sure your loved one has at least one social contact each day, such as chatting online with a family member or meeting a friend for lunch. This way, your loved one can express his or her emotions and get feedback regarding ways to feel happier. Senior classes, family events, and home visitors are other ideas to help you start planning to keep your loved one engaged.
If you’re concerned about your loved one being unhappy, one of the best things you can do is provide love, support, and encouragement. In Windermere, home care agencies can be a great boon to seniors. With the help of the caregivers at Home Care Assistance, your aging loved one can lead a happier and healthier life. We offer a revolutionary program called the Balanced Care Method, which encourages seniors to eat nutritious foods, exercise and socialize regularly, and focus on other lifestyle factors that increase life expectancy. Call one of our dedicated Care Managers today at (407) 232-7155 to learn about the high quality of our in-home care services.