The need for elder care may come as a result of an illness, injury, hospitalization, or simply the gradual process of aging. It’s not always easy to notice (or accept) that your loved one needs help. There are many warning signs to look for but here are a few of the big ones.
- Mobility Problems. Is your loved one walking from room to room grabbing onto furniture for balance? Do they have difficulty getting out of a chair due to muscle weakness or arthritis? Have they experienced a fall recently? Although the use of canes and walkers can help with balance, the lack of mobility sometimes due to the fear of falling can impact someone’s overall health.
- Weight Loss. Have you noticed your parent(s) clothes becoming loose? Have you checked the refrigerator and cupboards recently? Sometimes weight loss can indicate a lack of motivation to eat, energy to cook or difficulty seeing to cook safely. Other times, weight loss is linked with a significant health condition and it might be best you mention it to their physician.
- Poor Home Maintenance. Are dishes piled in the sink or counter? Are old newspapers and magazines stacked high when they used to be read and tossed away promptly? Is the once beautifully manicured garden becoming overgrown and uncared for?
- Lack of Personal Hygiene. Pay attention to appearance. Are his/her clothes clean? Do you notice them wearing the same pieces again and again? Do you detect body odor, unshaven or unkempt hair? What about fingernails and toenails, do they appear clean and trimmed?
Talking with a parent or loved one can be difficult. Sometimes knowing you are concerned or that you pointed it out might be inspiration enough. If they don’t show signs of willingness to get help, contact their doctor and let them know your observations.
Please contact a member of Hearthstone’s Community Relations for more information and learn how Hearthstone Senior Living can offer a solution.