This question often remains unasked by caregivers of a senior adult. Sometimes, seniors don’t have items vital to their health and safety because their caregivers or family members are unaware of warning signs that they need more assistance.
Seniors may be afraid to ask for help because they don’t want to lose their independence. They can receive help in many small ways while still remaining self-reliant. The following may be warning signs that your loved one needs help:
- Check the seniors’ kitchen for spoiled or expired food. Don’t just look in the refrigerator, but also in the freezer and drawers. The reason for expired or spoiled food could be because they aren’t able to grocery shop. If the senior adult does the grocery shopping, check the grocery list for frozen dinners and junk foods. Be alert to constant weight loss.
- Look around the house. Check for cleanliness and things that may be hazardous to the senior adults’ daily living activities. Can the senior still do household cleaning? Consider the difficulty of each chore in terms of their health and ability to perform the task.
- Check the floors and stairways. Look for stains, this could be because the senior dropped food due to unsteady hands. Make sure the flooring is safe, rugs cluttering the floor and shaggy carpet can obscure safety. If your loved one has trouble walking, take into account the number of stairs in their home.
- Look under beds and sofas for cluttered newspapers and books as these items can be a fire hazard. This clutter could be a sign of the senior having difficulties with organization.
- Check the mail to make sure bills are being paid.
- Check their medications regularly to make sure they are taking them appropriately and on time.
- See if your loved ones’ clothes are dirty or if they are neglecting personal hygiene.
- Find out if they are spending time alone or if they talk on the phone/socialize with others.
If you notice some of these warning signs in your friends or loved ones, consider assisted living or home care to help them remain more healthy and safe. Helping your loved one in these small ways helps secure their safety while they maintain independence.
Editor’s Note: Article submitted by Americare.