Aging is a cycle of life; eventually, you’re bound to get there. When you imagine your parents aging, you may not comprehend the extent to which this stage in life will affect them and you. Seeing your parents fragile when they were once the people you depended on for care can be nerve-wracking; you need to be prepared. While at one point your elderly parents age in good health and can live independently, they eventually need long-term care; keep them healthy by doing the following things.
Keep parents engaged and active
When your parents are older, they are more susceptible to diseases; something as simple as flu could lead to severe complications, such as pneumonia, asthma, and a sinus infection. It is, therefore, essential to ensure that your parents remain active and engaged in various low-impact exercise routines to strengthen their immune system and prevent their bones from becoming fragile. Enroll your parents in a yoga class, take them for physical therapy, and ensure they engage in recreational activities.
Renovate the home to make it age-friendly
As parents age, they cannot perform some activities, such as going down and up the stairs, cooking, and showering the same way they used to. If your parents live at home, renovate the house to make it age-friendly to prevent hazardous accidents, like slips and falls. You can install a ramp if they’re using wheelchairs, lower the cabinets and doorknobs, and install handlebars in places like the bathrooms and corridors.
Find a care provider
While you may want to take care of aging parents personally, sometimes it isn’t possible to be physically present, but it doesn’t mean they can’t receive care. If your parents want to age in place, you can hire a respite care provider to run errands, prepare meals, take them to the doctor, and help them with other things like using the bathroom and taking their medication. Alternatively, if they are for the idea, you can enroll them in a nursing home and ensure they don’t face financial elder abuse.
Watch their diet
Seniors hardly have enough energy to move around, let alone shop for the right foods; this puts them at a high risk of malnutrition. You may find that while you’re away, your parents skimp on meals or depend on processed foods and quick fixes that add no nutritional value. If you’re living with your parents, try and prepare regular meals and put them in the fridge for when you’re not around. Similarly, inform the care provider of any dietary restrictions to keep them healthy.
Communicate with your parents
Care goes beyond providing finances and ensuring they are physically healthy. Communicating with your parents about their needs, feelings, and wishes can help them age well. Keep in touch through regular phone calls, video calls, and face-to-face communication to know how they are faring.
For the longest time, parents are strong and independent, but they become fragile and vulnerable at some point in their lives. In the same way, they took care of you, ensure you do everything possible to keep them well. However, as you do so, remember to take care of yourself.