Sunday, July 25, 2010

Your Loved One may Need Help!

In the many years that I have spent in the Elder-Care business, there are always certain signs that many children or loved ones are missing. I am often perplexed and overwhelmed when I walk into a client's homes for the first time for the meet and greet. The family member(s) are often there to ask questions, give their concerns and the likes, and I often hear..."I don't know when all this started"...I on the other hand am looking around at for sure signs of neglect on the homeowners part, is usually NOT their fault, they have been needing assistance for a while and it has gone unnoticed. As our aging loved ones grow older there are a number of reasons why things can go awry....Here are some signs to look for:

1. Changes in house keeping patterns:
Has your parent or elder always maintained a certain house keeping pattern that is beginning to change? This change could be happening for a variety of reasons, but it is important to raise your level of awareness if you see this happening.

2. Finances:
Are bills not being paid on time? Are there issues with the primary backing accounts (overdrafts, bounced checks, etc).

3. Weight Loss:
Is there noticeable weight loss? Can it be because your aging parent or loved one can not cook or shop on their own? Do you notice that the food in the house is outdated or close to spoiling?

4. Burns & Bruises:
Does your aging parent or elder have unusual black and blue bruises on their body? This could be an indication that they may have fallen or have trouble moving from place to place in the home. Any burns may indicate that your elders may have problems cooking.

5. Poor hygiene:
Do you notice changes in the bathing, dressing and grooming or toileting habits of your elder or aging parent? Are they wearing the same clothes often or even wearing clothing that may be inappropriate?

6. Moving from place to place:
Does your aging parent have problems moving from one room to the other or navigating the kitchen? Are they having problems walking and doing normal tasks like checking the mail?

7. Forgetfulness:
Is your aging parent forgetting appointments? Are your elders forgetting things like returning calls, what trash day is, are they frequently misplacing things, can't recall names of familiar people or objects, etc?

8. Depression:
Does your parent or elder seem sad or withdrawn more than usual? Do you notice a lack of motivation?

9. Physical or Verbal Abuse:
Does you aging parent seem uncharacteristically volatile? Do you notice sudden verbal or physical outbursts?

10. Physical Signs:
Do you notice that the car has dents and scratches or that there are stains in the carpet from spills? Do you smell a urine odor in the house (which could be a sign of incontinence)? Are there stacks of unopened mail, unfilled prescriptions or is the grass growing higher than normal?

Additional info provided by: JM Jackson-E-zine articles