Family caregivers help their senior loved ones manage physical illnesses and cognitive deficits, and they also provide transportation to medical appointments, perform household chores, and prepare meals. In addition to these tasks, here are some responsibilities family caregivers might assume for their loved ones.
Assist with ADLs
The activities of daily living, also known as ADLs, include dressing, grooming, bathing, eating, and performing oral hygiene. To preserve your loved one’s independence, encourage him or her to participate in as many ADLs as possible, even if the participation is minimal. If your loved one has memory impairment or dementia, you may have to offer verbal cues or show him or her how to perform a certain activity, such as combing or brushing his or her hair or buttoning a shirt. It also helps if you’re in reasonably good health because you may need to lift, turn, or reposition your loved one while maintaining proper body mechanics.
Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of senior care. You can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide individualized care plans to meet your elderly loved one’s unique care needs. Our holistic Balanced Care Method was designed to help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and our Cognitive Therapeutics Method offers mentally stimulating activities that can stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia.
Provide Emotional Support
As people age, they may become lonely or socially isolated, overwhelmed by medical bills, worried about poor health, or afraid of losing their independence. Receiving comfort and emotional support can help seniors look forward to the future with anticipation and eagerness. If your loved one is depressed or develops feelings of hopelessness, ask the physician for a referral to a mental health specialist who can assess your loved one so a treatment plan can be implemented.
Interpret Doctor’s Recommendations
As a family caregiver, you may need to accompany your loved one to medical appointments. With the physician’s approval, you can record the appointment or simply jot down pertinent pieces of information so your loved one can review them at a later time. Seniors often become anxious when visiting the doctor, and they may fail to absorb certain pieces of information. You may also need to translate what the doctor is saying if your loved one speaks a different language than the physician, or you may need to use sign language if your loved one is profoundly deaf.
Altamonte Springs in-home care experts are available to provide high-quality care to seniors on an as-needed basis. From assistance with mobility and exercise to providing transportation to the doctor’s office and social events, there are a variety of ways professional caregivers can help your aging loved one continue to live independently.
Monitor Health Status
One of the most important responsibilities of a family caregiver is monitoring for changes in physical and mental status. These changes may be the result of depression, lack of sleep, medication side effects, or a serious health condition, such as hyperglycemia, low blood pressure, systemic infection, cardiovascular disease, or stroke. As soon as you see a change in your loved one’s status, call the physician. If you believe the situation is a medical emergency, take your loved one to the hospital or call for an ambulance.
If you’re the primary caregiver for a senior loved one in Orlando, respite care is available when you need time away from your important caregiving duties. At Home Care Assistance, our respite caregivers are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to help your loved one manage everyday tasks in the comfort of home while you have the chance to take a much-needed break. Reach out to one of our Care Managers today at (407) 232-7155 to schedule a free in-home consultation.