Ways to Help an Aging Parent

Ways to Help an Aging Parent from North Carolina Lifestyle Blogger Adventures of Frugal Mom

When a parent starts aging, it can be hard to know what to do. They’re still a functioning adult, and you don’t want to baby them. They are, however, getting older–and their abilities are changing. Simple tasks like opening cans or climbing the stairs can be difficult, or even hazardous, for your parent, and you may feel an internal struggle. How much do you help? And, how do you help most effectively?

When it comes to helping an aging parent, there are three key things you may want to consider. Getting them the best care, and the safest lifestyle possible is down to the two of you working together. Here are a few ways to help mom or dad transition easily into a different way of life.

Stay Up to Date on Their Health Needs

As your parent ages, their health will change. Roughly 80% of older individuals have a chronic disease, so your parent will likely deal with more issues as they become older. Stay up to date on their health issues, and even consult with their doctor about how they should be living, what they should be taking, etc. If you realize a parent is disregarding their doctor’s orders, you may want to find ways of encouraging them to do so. Your parent may also be dealing with health issues they’re not willing to address. If they have difficulty tying their shoes or writing without shaking, they could be dealing with essential tremors, and you may need to encourage them to seek treatment for essential tremors. No matter what their health needs are, staying on top of their issues could make things easier for both of you.

Move Them Somewhere New

If your parent isn’t in the financial shape they should be, you may want to consider helping them relocate. If they can sell their home and downsize to something smaller, they’ll be better prepared for their future. There are other concerns as well, such as the fall-risk of stairs, so moving them to a first-floor condo in Birmingham, MI, Bolingbrook, IL, or somewhere close to their children, could be the best thing for them. If their health is a serious concern, it may be time to move them to an assisted living or nursing home, to be sure they receive 24/7 care.

Don’t Try to Control Them

As our parent’s age, we can lose sight of the fact that they’re still adults. The more age takes over, the more a parent can seem like a child–no longer capable of doing the same things. Instead of treating our parents like a kid, we need to find the balance between caring about and caring for. Our parents are still adults, and it can be troubling for them to be treated without respect, or to have their choices taken away. We may be sure we know best, but wherever possible, we should try to work with our parents, instead of for them.

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  1. Taking care of your aging parent is one of the greatest act of give-back to them. I think this post is very touching and sincere. Thanks for sharing your thoughts Melissa

  2. Hi Melissa

    Great article – unfortunately this is something that as we get older we all need to consider for our own parents. I always imagine my parents as they were when I was growing up!

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