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Planning Your Aging Parents Care
Open up the care conversation with the resources found at CareConversations.org
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It’s inevitable. As we age – our parents are aging with us. With that aging comes a lot of issues that need discussion. There will come the time that you or another family member will need to start the conversation on what their wishes are for when they can no longer care for themselves at a 100% capacity. Now is a great time to start the planning your aging parent’s care. This is where you may find careconversations.org a helpful resource for you to tap into. It’s all about planning and preparing.
There are many resources available today that weren’t around 30 years ago. There’s in-home care (LNA’s/CNA’s), respite services for their caretakers. There’s skilled nursing home care and assisted living homes. An adult daycare may be an option for your situation. Maybe you just need someone to come in for personal care. And then one may just need some rehabilitation care.
With their being so many options out there now – family members need to be informed as to what best fits the needs of the aging parent and their family, based on circumstances at hand. Although if your parent has been hospitalized – often times the hospital will make the recommendation as to what they see as being the best solution for the patient and their family.
For example – my mom is extremely independent and in her late 70’s. She recently experienced a huge blood clot in her leg, which landed her in the hospital. She had been out of commission for nearly a month and it was recommended that she go to the rehab center once released from the hospital. This was done so they could make sure before she went back home (where she lives alone) that she could dress herself, prepare meals (nothing spectacular soups, sandwiches etc.) and walk about with duramedical equipment, such as a walker and cane. Her staying with one of us children wasn’t an option for her. The accessibility into our homes wasn’t there; nor was the availability for her to have round the clock care.
Mom stayed at the rehab center for two weeks before going home. Once home, visiting nurses went in daily to make sure she was taking her meds, eating, and bathing. They would draw her blood so that she didn’t need to go out every day. After so long the visits become more infrequent until they finally stopped. Family members checked in on her daily. Now she is able to get out and about safely, but always carries a cell phone with her in case she needs to call call my brother, 911, the neighbor, or myself.
A combination of services were used for mom’s care. And with there being so many options available, often times families are overwhelmed with all of them. What do they mean? Which option is best for our loved one? Where do I go to set the services up? This is where careconversations.org can help you make an informed decision.
It’s never too early to have a care conversation with the aging parent(s). If they are of sound mind to help in the decision making process – they will be much more open to the different options that are available to them. Guide them to the Care Conversations website – let them read what’s available.
Lastly, find out before they can’t make their own decisions if they have Advanced Directives in place. If they don’t, encourage them to do so. I know the last thing I want is to be kept alive on life support UNLESS there is a good chance that I could survive and would be able to live a good quality of life. And yes, one can put in place stipulations when making out their Advance Directives. It’s all about planning and preparing. Planning and preparing their care, their finances, their advanced directives.
Visiting the planning and preparing section at Care Conversations can help you with this overwhelming, emotional, but necessary decision making process.
Do you have an aging parent? Have you had a care conversation with them?