Talking about home care support with your parent

May, 2021
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You know it is time for one of your parents to get home care support when they have difficulty in completing their normal daily living activities like getting dressed and taking shower. You are uncomfortable in having this discussion with your parents as they believe no help is required for them. You need to have patience when approaching the conversation with your loved one.

Below are some of the signs that your loved one needs home care support

Missed medicine doses: Your parents forget to take medicine on a regular basis. You need to remind them multiple times about the schedule and set up reminders. You have observed that in spite of your best efforts there are missed doses of medication.

Signs of depression: When people grow old, there is sudden change in their lifestyles in a short span of time. There are multiple factors which lead to these changes. Some people retire from the job which they had for a long time which leads to lack of interaction with the colleagues they were interacting with on a daily basis. Physical conditions related to old age can prevent seniors from participating in activities which they enjoyed on a regular basis. The signs of depression seniors can have are the irritated tone of voice when you communicate with them or mood swings caused by depression.

Recent Injury due to Fall: Fall is one of the major causes of hospitalization for seniors above the age of 65. It is estimated that 1 in 3 seniors over the age of 65 is likely to experience a fall accident. In Canada, this means that an estimated 1.3 million Canadians over age 65 are likely to fall this year. If you see bruises or minor injury due to a fall accident, you should make a note of that. It can be a sign that your loved one might need support in completing the daily living activity.
Having a conversation with a parent regarding the home care support will require a lot of patience and understanding of their situation. Below are some ways of the initiating a conversation with your parent.

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Highlight Advantages: Mention that the safety of your parents and their happiness is your utmost priority and having someone to provide companionship and help them with daily chores at their home will ease some of the risk of living alone at the house. Your parents are familiar with their home so would like to stay in that place for a longer duration compared to moving out to an assisted facility. Living in their own home will provide them with more independence compared to moving out to a living facility. Explain the benefits of having a caretaker at home to support in daily living activities which will reduce the risk of fall which can lead to a serious injury.

Provide Different Options: Instead of making all the decisions for your parents, provide them with multiple options and let them make their own choice. This will make them feel empowered and feel in control. It is more likely that they will stick with the decision if they arrive at the decision on their own.

Discuss the transition: Your parents might be already experiencing a lot of changes in their lives. It will be helpful to gradually transition them to a new environment. They might feel vulnerable by the presence of a new caretaker in their home. It will be a good idea to start with a small number of hours in the beginning and gradually increase the total number of support hours per week. You can also try to get the home care support worker to support in meal preparation or helping with household chores.

One of the most important things while having the discussion with your parents is to be prepared for this discussion. It will be better that you take some time out to have a conversation. Discuss various options with your family beforehand and gather some facts and benefits for your suggestions.

You can always reach out to CareReq to get additional information about how to proceed further.