Senior Will Understand Their Ailments
The elderly have a greater understanding of their limitations than we may give them credit for. Listen for hints. When you are on the phone with elderly parents, listen to their words. Are they repeating stories? Are they discussing questionable and unsafe behavior – whether climbing stairs or driving in car?
Are they expressing hesitancy in completing household tasks? They may articulate a very real worry, or an understanding of their capabilities on certain tasks that we may sometimes dismiss. Their opposition to bathing may be simple inconvenience…”not right now”. But it may also provide a hint to a very real fear of falling and injury.
Falling, for seniors, is a constant worry. Certainly, in cold weather this may be due to snow and ice. But may also be due to the feeling of dizziness, de-hydration in hot/humid temperatures, loss of blood flow to the brain, and/or loss of balance when standing and walking. This is a very real fear. Simply walking from the front door to the car door can be hazardous, and the cause of great anxiety.
I have an elderly female client whose legs simply collapsed as she walked, and the fall resulted in her breaking both her nose and elbow. Seemingly simple tasks — walking, standing, climbing stairs — are not so easy for many seniors. We need to listen and observe for hints of apprehension and fear in the elderly.
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John D. Miller is the founder/owner of Home Care Partners, LLC, a Massachusetts business providing private duty, personalized in-home assistance and companion care services to those needing help in daily activities and household functions.
Phone: (781) 378-2164