As your parents get older, their needs also will increase. So, if your family is trying to figure out how to care for your aging parents, here are five common mistakes you should avoid when caring for your parents.
- 1. Don’t exclude parents when making decision on their care
Neglecting to include parents in choices regarding their care could lead to hurt feelings, resentment and lack of cooperation. Sometimes parents may already have arrangements in place. So it’s always best to include your parents in decisions that will affect them.
- 2. Not planning ahead.
Care for aging parents can place unexpected demands on your finances. When a parent retires, an adult child should talk to the parents about health issues, financial resources and insurance coverage. This would help you to assess the situation and create a plan to handle a health crisis or manage home care should the need arise.
- 3. Not taking care of the family caregiver
In cases where a member of the family decides to be the caregiver, it’s easy to forget that he or she needs attention and support. The rest of the family should ensure that the caregiver gets sufficient time off to de-stress. Taking care of elderly people can sometimes be a difficult and thankless job. Also, jobs like changing diapers can be unpleasant and can affect the caregiver patience.
- 4. Not having an alternative plan
Even a very devoted caregiver needs time off occasionally, and families should be prepared with backup measures in case the primary caregiver is unavailable. Hiring a temporary nurse can reduce some of the stress you may feel from balancing your life with caring for an aging parent. But it will also be an additional expense, so the family should be prepared for it.
- 5. Taking on too much time
It is very difficult to balance work, family and caring for an aging parent without compromising the quality of care. If you’re looking after elderly parents, you should be careful not to take on too much. And don’t be afraid to ask for help if you feel overwhelmed.