When your parents get older, their ability to live the vibrant, independent lives of their youth will begin to fade, and the prominence of increasing health problems will make themselves known. It is at this point in their life that you will need to step up and become a caregiver, returning the nurturing they gave to you as a child when they are in their twilight years. It can be difficult to know how to care for a parent in old age as the dynamic has always been the other way around. In this guide, you will learn some informative tips on how to provide your elderly parents with the support they need as they approach their later years.
In their own home
Depending on the condition your parent or parents are in, they will want to be able to hang on to whatever independence they can, and a big part of this is being able to live in their own home. If this is a viable option for them, you need to learn how to take care of your elderly parents in their own home. For example, you should make a point of getting to understand the complex and manifold needs that your parent has in old age so that you can find helpful ways of sorting out problems. So, if your parent isn’t very mobile, would a wheelchair or a stairlift help them to preserve their independence? If they cannot eat very well, do you need to take over their shopping to get them softer and easily digestible foods so that they do not miss out on the important meals of the day?
In case of emergency
Of course, with old age comes the increased likelihood of medical emergencies, and as their caregiver, you need to be ready for when these happen so that they are able to get treatment quickly, be that at home or the hospital. Start by writing up an emergency checklist for caregivers. For example, having a list of all the medication they are on, and any pre-existing conditions they have will be a real help when talking to doctors or paramedics, ensuring they can get the right care when they need it most.
Getting justice for fatal medical negligence
With age comes fragility, and this may mean that an elderly parent might not make it through some emergency treatment. However, with the proper care and diligence, they should have attentive doctors and nurses doing all they can, so no matter what, your parent was looked after. This being said, sometimes there can be lapses in judgment or cases of neglect that can lead an elderly person to pass away before their time. In cases of medical negligence, a coroner will open an inquest to work out how your parent died.
Taking care of those who took care of you is a gift as you finally get to repay them for bringing you into this world.