For many of us the first bank holiday of the year is a chance to spend time with family, either by visiting them or having them to visit us. However, for some people those visits flag up some early warning signals that all may not be quite right.
We’re not saying that these signals mean you need to instigate 24 hour care immediately, just that it might be worth considering the future and putting some plans into place.
Does this sound familiar?
I had a great weekend at Mum’s, but I noticed that she was letting the washing up pile up a bit, and there was a funny smell every time I opened the fridge. On further investigation there was some seriously out of date stuff in there, that’s just not like her.
Dad came to stay for a few days over the bank holiday, it was really good to see him. He forgot to take his medication a few times which was a bit worrying. If I hadn’t noticed I don’t know what would have happened.
What can you do?
If Mum can’t seem to keep on top of keeping the house in shape like she used to, have you thought about getting a cleaner in to help a few times a week? It’ll take some of the pressure off her and put your mind at ease too. You might even be able to get someone to help do the shopping for her (and put it away).
Dad forgetting his medication is also something you can get help with. His pharmacist should be able to put his medication into a dosset box with the right time and day if that is what he muddles up. Reminders written near to the kettle or other regularly used item could also help. If it is a bit more serious than that then you might need to arrange a pop in carer to come along and remind him a few times a day.
If it seems that someone popping in, to help with medicines or bathing, is the best option, there are a great number of agencies who do this type of care. We work closely with (and have shared many clients with), and recommend an agency called Home Instead. They are throughout the UK.
This point in your parent’s life should also make you think about putting some other plans in place to help you in the long run.
Power of Attorney: If you don’t have one in place now is the time to think about it whilst they still have mental capacity. It is easier to get this set up before you need it than after the fact. If you don’t have a lawyer already then look into Solicitors For the Elderly (SFE) as they are experts in all aspects of law relating to older people.
Financial Planning: Again, if you don’t already have a plan in place now is the time to start investigating your options around paying for care. A member of The Society of Later Life Advisers (SOLLA) will be well versed in all of the options available.
This may be a good time to have a conversation with your parents about what they want to happen in the future. We know that most people want to stay in their own home as long as they can and it is possible with 24 hour care, but knowing for sure what is most important for your parents in the future will help you plan for the outcome.
If you would like to know more about live-in care as an option please don’t hesitate to contact us, we’ll happily talk to you about it. Call 0844 477 6461 and talk to our team.