The key to opening a discussion with your aging loved ones is to understand their concerns. Here is a list of the top 10 fears associated with aging amongst seniors:
- Loss of Independence – Its important for them to keep as much control over their lives as possible. Always offer information and options to help them make the best decisions.
- Declining Function and Health – The majority of seniors have multiple chronic health conditions, with associated physical limitations. Have a discussion about what assistance they need, and plan for the future.
- Money & Financial Exploitation – They worry about running out of money, and others taking advantage of them. Discussions should involve being sure basic expenses are covered, and long term plans. Help them feel comfortable to have a trusted individual monitor their accounts for unauthorized activity.
- Not being able to live at home – Home is where memories have been made, and especially important with dementia. Discuss options for hiring caregivers and ways to enable them to stay home. Be open to gathering information about downsizing and senior communities.
- Death of a spouse – They see friends and relatives passing on, which is a reminder of their own mortality. The loss of a spouse threatens their independence and is a potential cause for loss of independence.
- Inability to manage their own daily activities – Its important that they do as much as possible for themselves, even if it takes longer. Hiring a caregiver to assist, and encouraging your loved one to participate helps foster independence
- Not being able to drive – This goes hand and hand with loss of independence, but stressing safety of themselves and that of others on the road is important. Find alternative ways for independent transportation: ex/ Uber, shuttles, caregivers, etc.
- Isolation or loneliness – Both can lead to depression and a loss of self-worth. Set schedules with family and friends to visit, or hiring caregivers.
- Abuse and Neglect – Encourage open conversations if there is a change in their behavior or you notice bruising or wounds.
- Fear of falling – Many falls can be prevented. The first step is regular exercise, but also install handrails, remove hazards such as rugs and cords, encourage use of a walker or can if needed, be sure to investigate causes for dizziness.
Our Happier at Home caregivers can be a great asset to your senior loved one when it comes to addressing these aging concerns and alleviating any fears they may have. Find a Happier at Home location near you and give us a call today!