How to Care for Your Aging Parents

You might not want to think about it but there will come a time when your parents need a little more help than the occasional visit to put up a new set of shelves. They might not be able to drive, dress or feed themselves and require your care and attention on a regular basis. Have you spoken to your parents about living arrangements, long-term care, inheritance, and their funeral wishes? These may not be the most comfortable of subjects to raise but they are important issues. Getting old can happen slowly, or it can happen overnight. The important thing for you to do is be prepared.

Organize a Family Meeting
The issues you need to talk about can’t be casually raised over the dinner table, particularly if there is more than one sibling. The best way to deal with this kind of conversation is to arrange a family meeting. Think about your own feelings and assess your financial situation, so you’re properly prepared. Let everyone know the purpose of the meeting so they can all be prepared. Issues you need to discuss include living arrangements, your parents' hopes or plans, financial resources, and how you can help.

Long-Term Care Solutions
You might not know any elders more independent than your own parents, but this could change in the blink of an eye. It is estimated that nearly 70% of seniors eventually need long-term care. There is a range of options depending on your parents’ health needs and wishes. There is the option of a personal care home or assisted living community. This is where seniors live in their own private apartment with services such as daily living assistance, help with medication, housekeeping, and meals provided.
A nursing home is where seniors receive a high level of medical care with licensed nurses on call 24 hours a day. Residents generally share a room, although private rooms are available.
If your parents are healthy enough to stay in their own home there is the option of home care services. Assistance is provided for activities such as bathing, dressing, preparing meals, and getting to appointments.
Leaving the care of your parents in the hands of someone else can be a worry. Should anything happen to them while in someone else’s care, it is possible to look into hiring the best elder abuse attorney Los Angeles can offer. Garcia Law can help in a sympathetic and understanding way.   

Should You be Your Parents Caregiver?
There is another option if you don’t want to be faced with the worry of letting other people care for your parents. Looking after your parents in your own home is also a more affordable option. There are, however, some downsides to consider regarding becoming your parents’ caregiver. The emotional strength required is huge as it can be devasting to watch your elderly parents become frail and confused. Logistically, it can also be a nightmare. Your home might not be big enough, or you might work hundreds of miles away and not have a very flexible job.
One final tip is to remember to take care of yourself during the tough times that are ahead. Communicate honestly with everyone, keep yourself informed, be strong and be patient.           

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