Taking care of a senior loved one can be tough even if you have siblings or extended family who can help you. If you’re an only child or don’t have the help of other family members and friends, it can be even more difficult. Emotionally and physically caregiving for a senior loved one requires a lot of strength. If your senior loved one has dementia or other serious medical problems, that adds to the complexity of caring for a senior loved one too. The best things that you can do to take care of a senior loved one by yourself are:
Get Some Help With The Day To Day Tasks
The physical tasks that need to be done to help your senior loved one can be done by a home care provider. It can be a big help to you and to your senior loved one to have a home care provider help with the cooking, the shopping and errands, the vacuuming, cleaning, laundry, dishes, and the other household tasks. The more tasks you can delegate to someone else the more time you will have to devote to other aspects of care and to taking care of yourself.
Ensure the Safety of their Home
If your senior loved one is going to be aging in place one of the best things that you can do is renovate the house and give it a senior-friendly makeover. Get the roof checked, cleaned, and repaired if necessary. Also get the major mechanical systems like the HVAC checked, and the plumbing. Having professionals come in to assess and clean various parts of the house will prevent you from having to deal with house-related emergencies later on. Or at least it will lower the risk of future emergencies. Set up standing appointments to have home maintenance tasks done on a regular basis so you will know that the house is being kept in good repair.
Set Some Boundaries
Even though it can be hard to set boundaries you will need to establish some boundaries in order to make sure that you have the time and mental energy needed to take care of your life obligations like work and your family. Remember that you don’t have to do everything for your senior parent yourself. A home care provider can be a great resource for helping with the immense responsibility of caring for a senior parent. Establish boundaries and stick to them.
Take Care Of Yourself
It’s a big life adjustment when you start caring for a senior loved one. Even if you have outside help like a home care provider you will still be spending a lot of time and mental energy caring for your senior parent. In order to make sure that you are able to handle the added responsibility you should make time for self care. Take care of yourself by eating healthy, making time to exercise, and getting some counseling or joining a support group to make sure your have good mental health.