How to care for Aging Parents
As we all get older we need to have serious discussion among our close family members (spouse, kids, siblings) about taking care of our Aging Parents. As they reach 70s and 80s we need to check their physical and mental well-being and make sure they are leading an independent living with excellent quality of life.
If we don’t plan properly we all will end up in confusion, sadness, helplessness, frustration, exhaustion when we have to deal with inevitable health related challenges. With solid family support, professional support and good communication we can renew the sense of love, compassion and tenderness in to any family with Aging Parent.
In order to do that effectively adult children should take care of the following diligently:
1. Find out their (Aging Parent) needs: Find out from your Parent what they want whether:
• They want to stay at home
• Move close to their kids
• Move to a Senior independent living community with common dining hall, cleaning facility, medical facility etc.
• Old age home /Nursing home.
When you notice poor eating habits, poor hygiene, neglecting their home, forgetfulness, difficulty driving then you need to counsel them to get help and provide help.
2. Find out your Parent’s assets including pension amount, the health insurance policies, and free medical facilities from the organization where they used to work etc.
3. Decide whether you want to be their Caregiver: It may
• Put emotional toll on you
• You may have to quit the job
• You may lose your benefits for your retirement.
• Consider professional help
• Make a Caregiver budget
• Make your own retirement plan
• Understand the costs of keeping your Parent in their home ( May need home health Nursing care or Medical Care Taker care if they have medical problem or just an assistant to do their day to day chores)
4. Make a joint decision: Discuss with your Parents, spouse, siblings and Children and make a joint decision about the location of the stay.
5. Financial Planning: Based on the above make a budget to take of care of your Parent with the contribution from your siblings to relieve the entire financial pressure on you.
With careful planning we can provide conducive atmosphere for our Parents to Age gracefully.