Maybe it was always your plan to care for Mom and Dad as they got older, or perhaps your caregiving role occurred suddenly. No matter the case, a caregiver has a lot to consider as they decide how to best support their loved ones, and continue planning elder care.
Creating a care plan for elderly parents is most helpful when it’s created as soon as possible. But this isn’t meant to add more stress — in fact, care planning is meant to do the opposite. Getting organized for Mom and Dad’s future needs will help everyone feel prepared and ready as each step occurs for each person.
From assessing Mom and Dad’s needs to finding resources and support, here are several tips and suggestions for creating a care plan for your parents.
Start the conversations early
You might be used to relying on your parents for advice, so taking the lead in these important conversations about their health can be uncomfortable. But there are many ways to support them without seeming invasive or judgemental.
Evaluate your parents’ needs
For the most accurate information, you can encourage your senior parents to visit their doctor virtually or in-person for an assessment of their health needs. If this isn’t possible right now due to the COVID-19 pandemic, or if your parents aren’t willing to go to the doctor, you can perform an unofficial evaluation yourself using this Activities of Daily Living Assessment.
Using the assessment as a guide, you’ll be able to create a picture of your concerns and the things you’re noticing for both parents. Having actual examples of your worries can make it easier to gently discuss your findings with your parents and their doctors.
Research and discuss support options
Take your findings and research what support is available in the area. If one or both of your parents could use help around the house, suggest hiring a housekeeper. If they aren’t keeping up with yardwork, see if they can hire someone in the neighborhood to help, or enlist the help of family members and friends.
If you notice more serious issues, such as trouble with mobility, forgetfulness, meal preparation, or personal care needs, they will require more advanced support, either with daily support from you as the caregiver, in-home health aides, or adjustments to the home. More railings can be installed inside and outside of the home, including in the bath and near the toilet, for example.
What is a care plan for parents?
A true care plan is a summary of all health conditions and current treatments. It’s created through those conversations with Mom and Dad, discussions with their doctors, financial coverage, and support for you, the caregiver.
Care planning for parents is especially helpful for caregivers of those suffering from dementia or Alzheimer’s. They create a better quality of life for all involved by providing added support, resources, and expectations.
Your parents most likely will need different levels of support, which is why each person’s care plan will keep you organized and allow you to give each of them the best quality of care.
When care becomes more advanced
As each of your loved one’s needs progress, it’s natural to feel more overwhelmed and stressed. But with a care plan, you’ll know what steps come next. If in-home help and added support have reached their limits and one or both parents need even more assistance, you will know that you can enlist more resources.
Does this mean your parents are moving in with you or a close family member? Is it time to move to an assisted living community? All of these next steps and the potential reasons for these steps can be included in your plan.
The Kensington can be a part of your care plan for Mom and Dad
As you reach your limits of care, the next natural step can be an assisted living community where your parents can age in place together safely and comfortably.
The Kensington Sierra Madre welcomes senior couples to enjoy our beautiful facility and 24-hour care from staff. With elegant dining services customized to their needs and life enrichment services to provide joy and purpose, your loved ones will experience comfort and luxury.
The coronavirus pandemic certainly has resulted in adjustments to our care, and our staff diligently follows all regulations and requirements issued by the CDC and local health department. The Kensington promise is to love and care for your family as we do our own, so every safety measure in place is executed with the highest level of attention.
Whether your senior parents don’t need much support or require advanced memory care, we have the tools and equipment necessary to support them mentally, physically, and emotionally.
Please reach out to us today to learn more about our communities, our programs, our staff, and our commitment to the best care you can find.
To learn more about our exceptional assisted living and memory care at The Kensington Sierra Madre, click below or give us a call today for any questions. We promise to love and care for your family, as we do our own.