As our parents get older, it can be a challenging and emotional time for everyone involved. As their children, we want to ensure that they are comfortable and well-cared for, but it can take time to figure out what to do and where to begin. However, by being informed and prepared, we can navigate these challenges and celebrate the joys of growing older together. Today, we’ll explore the ways you can support your aging loved ones, including but not limited to paid caregiving, state assistance, and other available support. Let’s dive right in!
Signs Your Elderly Parent Needs Help
There are several alarming signs that may indicate that an older adult needs more help, including:
- Difficulty with daily activities: Struggles with tasks such as walking, bathing, dressing, and cooking can indicate that an older person may need assistance with these activities.
- Changes in physical appearance: Unexplained weight loss, poor hygiene, and changes in clothing choices can be indicators that an elderly person is struggling and may need help.
- Changes in behavior: Sudden mood changes, increased confusion, and disorientation can indicate that an older adult may need more assistance and support.
- A decline in cognitive abilities: Difficulty with memory, communication, and decision-making can be early signs of cognitive decline. They may indicate that the elderly need more help.
- Safety concerns: Issues with mobility, falls, and medication management can be serious safety concerns for elderly individuals. These red flags may indicate that they need more help at home or in a facility.
- Isolation and loneliness: Withdrawing from social activities and relationships can signify depression or a need for social support.
- Difficulty with managing finances: Struggles with paying bills, mismanaging money, and frequent calls for assistance can indicate that an older or disabled person may need help with financial management.
It is crucial to identify these signs and provide the necessary support and resources to help elderly individuals live safely and comfortably. This may involve working with family members, professional care providers, or local resources to ensure that the elderly person has the support they need.
How To Start Supporting Your Aging Parents
- Start a conversation: Talk to your parents about their preferences and expectations for their future. Ask them what they would like to happen if they need help with day-to-day activities or if they become ill. Find out what their wishes are for medical treatment and end-of-life care.
- Get organized: Make a list of their medical information, insurance policies, and other important documents. Consider getting power of attorney so you can make decisions for your parents if they cannot.
- Assess their needs: Look for signs that your parents may need help with daily activities, such as bathing, dressing, or preparing meals. Consider hiring in-home care or moving them to a care facility if necessary.
- Make time for joy: While it’s essential to take care of practical matters, it’s also important to celebrate the joys of aging together. Plan regular visits and trips, and find activities that they both enjoy.
- Stay connected: Even if you live far away, technology can help you stay in touch. Encourage your parents to use video calls and email to stay connected with you and their grandchildren.
- Seek support: Taking care of aging parents can be emotionally and physically taxing. Make sure to seek help from friends, family, or a support group. It can also be helpful to speak with a therapist who can provide you with tools and strategies for managing stress.
Aging can be difficult, but we can also make it a time of joy and celebration. Remember to communicate openly, get organized, assess your parents’ needs, make time for joy, stay connected, and seek support. By doing so, you can ensure that your aging parents are comfortable at home.
How Can I Get Paid for Caregiving for My Parents?
Family caregiving can be very demanding and emotionally and physically tolling. It can be a source of stress for many caregivers and significantly impact their health, relationships, and financial well-being.
It’s essential for caregivers to prioritize their well-being and to seek support when they need it. This can include talking to friends and family, joining a support group, or seeking help from professional resources like therapists or respite care services.
There are several ways to get paid for caregiving for your parents in Pennsylvania, including:
- Private Pay: You can agree with your parents or their family members to provide care for a fee. This is known as private pay and can be a flexible arrangement that meets the needs of both parties.
- Medicaid Waiver Programs: Pennsylvania offers programs that can provide funding to pay for care services in the home. You can check with the Pennsylvania Department of Aging or the local Area Agency on Aging to learn more about these programs and how to apply.
- In-Home Support Services: Pennsylvania also offers in-home support services through the Home & Community Based Services. These services can provide support with activities of daily living, meal preparation, and light housekeeping.
- Long-Term Care Insurance: If your parents have long-term care insurance, they may be eligible to receive benefits to pay for your care services.
- Tax Credits: There are also tax credits available for caregivers in Pennsylvania, such as the Caregiver Credit and the Dependent Care Credit. These credits can provide financial relief for caregivers who care for their parents.
Working with a professional is vital to determine the best course of action for you and your family. AmeriBest Home Care can help you navigate the complex regulations and requirements related to paid caregiving. Call 1800-HOMECARE today.