All seniors need to be encourage to stay independent for as long as possible. I have been asked so many times what are the most important things to help seniors remain independent…? Here are the Top 4 Things you can do
Encourage seniors to do things on their own – Caregivers need to understand when it’s appropriate to encourage seniors to be independent, and when to offer assistance if needed. Even if doing a task on your own might be quick and easy, taking the time to help the senior accomplish it can give them confidence and help them feel more independent.
Urge physical activity – Encouraging physical activity is a great way to get those endorphins flowing, enhancing their mood. Whether it’s as simple as walking to the mailbox or going through exercises a physical therapist suggested, keep them moving and they’ll be much more likely to remain independent for longer.
Utilize adaptive equipment – Having the appropriate equipment like reaching tools and handrails can make the life of a senior much easier and allow them to stay in their homes longer.
Be patient – Most tasks a caregiver does can be done by the patient, just not as quickly. Don’t rush them when they are completing a task like eating, getting dressed or using the bathroom. When given the right amount of time, seniors can complete many tasks on their own.
Research indicates that loneliness increases the risk of an untimely death by 45 percent among the elderly
Help arrange regular visits to the local senior community centers or maybe senior aerobics classes.
Helping them lead productive lives that are meaningful and with (reasonable responsibilities).
A few more things to keep in mind.
How Caregivers Can Help
Let The Person Speak – When an ill person brings up subjects that make you feel uncomfortable, it’s natural to want to squelch the discussion or rapidly change the subject. However, it’s very important to listen unselfishly and avoid responding with, for example: “Let’s not get into that right now. Can’t we discuss something more pleasant?” or “Do you really think it’s helpful to dwell on this topic?”
Know When To Say “I Don’t Know” – Whether the patient asks a spiritual or theological question that catches you off guard or she wants to know about the side effects of a medication, it helps to learn how to be noncommittal without seeming evasive. You don’t want her to think that you don’t care or that you’re hiding something, and you definitely don’t want to offer misinformation that might do more harm than good.
Resist The Urge To Spout Platitudes – When your loved one is uncomfortable, upset, or worried, you might be tempted to utter platitudes like, “Everything will be okay,” “I know how you feel,” “God has given you a long life,” or “It’s God’s will.” While we hope that these phrases will be a quick fix to problems we’d rather not deal with, the truth is that they’re trite and meaningless. What’s more, sugarcoating reality doesn’t fool most people, and it certainly doesn’t spark positive change.
Respond Constructively To Anger -Anger is a natural human emotion, and it’s important to recognize that chronically ill people have a lot to potentially feel upset about. Understandably, many patients are angry that they are so sick. Plus, their pain and energy levels might make them less patient or less able to handle stressful situations. Therefore, it’s not unusual for caregivers to be on the receiving end when their loved one’s fuse blows for any reason.
Home Star Service, Southwestern Ontario’s leading home care provider has some answers for you. We help Seniors Remain Independent With In-Home Health Care Services
Provides clients with conversation, reminiscing, hobbies, recreation and other activities.
Driving to medical appointments, visits to friends and family, and other outings.
Maintain clean, tidy home with kitchen and bath cleanup, linen changes and laundry.
Exercise & Recreation
Physical activities including walking, range of motion exercises, gardening and other activities.
Personal care and hygiene including oral care, grooming, dressing and elimination monitoring.
For optimal hydration/nutrition we assist in meal planning, groceries and preparation.
Assistance with transfers, ambulation and overall mobility.
Ensure medications are taken as scheduled.