When Age Takes Its Toll: A Complete Guide on How to Care for Elderly Parents

Are you parents old and frail? This is the time they need you the most. Here’s a complete guide on how to care for elderly parents.

When Age Takes Its Toll A Complete Guide on How to Care for Elderly Parents from North Carolina Lifestyle Blogger Adventures of Frugal Mom

Our parents sacrificed a huge portion of their lives to ensure our happiness. So, when the time comes that they need a little extra help around the house, there are many ways to give back for all their years of love and support. 

Although it’s difficult to watch them age, the process can be done with elegance and grace. A few added check-ins, a little less alone time, a few new activities, and you’ve got yourself a recipe for a “happily ever after” kind of success. 

Some of the tips below are simple, like playing cards one night a week after work. Others are more difficult, like sitting down to discuss a senior living facility. But, no matter where the road may take you, we’ve got you covered with how to care for elderly parents. 

Stay In Constant Contact

Whether your parents are living alone or in an assisted living facility, the easiest thing you can do is stay in constant contact with them. Make sure they’re tech-savvy enough to respond to a check-in text or FaceTime.

If nothing else, make a daily phone call part of your morning routine or lunchtime break. See if you have time to send one more text in the evening once you’ve gotten through all your family activities. Not only will this put your mind at ease, it will also make them feel connected to a loved one. 

Make Visits a Regular Occurrence

You don’t have to be like the perfect families on TV that gather together for Sunday dinner every week. (Although, if you can, more power to you.) The point is, keep regular visits at the forefront of your mind.

If you live near your parents, swing by one night a week on your way home from work. Try to take the kids to visit Saturday morning or Sunday afternoon after church. Work it into your schedule so you’re not overly pressed for time. The truth is, the more they age, the more you need to increase your check-ins and stop-offs. 

Help Them Find Community Events

Do your parents live in a retirement community? Help them get involved through volunteer opportunities or social gatherings. Heck, if they really need the push, tag along one night and attend the types of events you’re trying to get them interested in. 

The more we stay home and isolated, the more things start to go downhill. Getting out, socializing, meeting new people, having something to look forward to… These are all wonderful ways to keep your parents feeling young and rejuvenated. 

And, remember, the activities can be anything from weekly card games to (perhaps best of all) a little tech class. See if you can register them in a senior tech class that will help them learn how to navigate Facebook, FaceTime, and maybe even post on SnapChat from time to time! 

Include Them In Your Events

Every once in a while, swing by and take mom to your meditation class. Ask Dad to come to your son’s little league game. Better yet, plan a legitimate weekend getaway around your parents. Plan an activity you know they’ll love.

Keep the plans within the realm of possibility for where they’re at in their aging process, but give them something to look forward to and maybe even pack a bag for. 

Consider a Caregiver

Are any of these activities outside the realm of possibility for your current situation? Do you worry about leaving your parents home alone, nevermind taking them on a weekend spa trip? If so, you might want to consider a caregiver

Although this is an added expense, there are many advantages. First, a caregiver will ease the disappointment of not being able to take them places. Second, it can ease your worry about not being able to stop by as often as you’d like, you can still rest assured that they can still take care of themselves using incontinence pads. Finally, if your parents aren’t picking up on all the modern technologies, this gives you a direct line to someone who’s sure to pick up the phone or send back a text. 

Consider a Senior Living Facility

If a daily companion isn’t going to cut it and you’re still concerned about the length of time your parents are spending alone, it might be time to have a conversation with them about long-term care. A serious red flag, of course, is an uptick in slips and falls. If you feel your parents are in imminent danger, be sure to have an open and honest conversation about the possibility of long-term care. 

Nowadays, assisted living facilities are hardly prison sentences. Many facilities come with palatial apartments, activities up the wazoo, and friendships galore. If finding local activities for your parents was tough to arrange, this could be the golden ticket. Card games in the lounge, weekend trips to the casino, weekly shops at the supermarket. Who could complain about such a self-catered life? 

How to Care for Elderly Parents Your Way

They don’t make a manual for this stage in life because there is no right or wrong way for how to care for elderly parents. Maybe your parents will never go down to the social hall for bridge every Thursday night. That’s fine! You can find another way to encourage them to get out and about. 

Maybe you don’t live nearby and can’t stop in regularly. That’s okay, too. There are plenty of caregivers out there that are worth their weight in gold. Also, one quick Google search will reveal senior living facilities that look like the Taj Mahal. Remember, do what works for you. This is still your life. Here at Adventures of a Frugal Mom, faith and family are the cornerstones to everything we do. In fact, in the “faith and family” section, we discuss elder care quite often. One of our most recent posts speaks to the many things we can learn from our aging parents. In the meantime, we wish your family a happy and peaceful life with an ocean full of memories.

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