I live out of state and always visit my parents at home for the holidays, which worries me because of the sometimes drastic differences I notice when I come home to see them. Is there anything I should look out for when I visit? And what should I do about those things?
We receive calls every holiday season from concerned adult children like you. Even if your parents are still young in their 60s, we strongly advise checking on a few things whenever you visit home, and to follow up on those items throughout the year if possible.
1. Are bills being paid and appointments being kept? You may notice that mom has let her bills pile up on the counter - it might be good to check that she's able to keep up with her finances.
2. Is there moldy or expired food in the fridge? And is the food they're eating healthy? Maybe dad hasn't gotten used to cooking for himself, so he's relying on frozen meals and forgetting about his leftovers. This can lead to malnutrition, which can be the cause of brittle bones, weakness, and other ailments.
3. Do you notice trip hazards throughout the house? These can be rugs whose corners may cause a tumble, uneven flooring, poorly lit rooms, and more. These kinds of hazards are best surveyed through our Home Safety Inspection, which helps in preventing falls, which cause injuries and hospital stays.
4. Are both of your parents' hygiene up to their usual standards? Check for body odor, if their clothes are free of stains, if their hair and teeth are clean, and especially if they have any redness or sores from not cleaning themselves properly.
5. Does your mom or dad seem depressed or antisocial? Seasonal Affective Disorder, also known as the Winter Blues, can cause your loved one to isolate him/herself, leave behind their old hobbies, and stay in bed more often.
If you notice any of these signs or any other concerns, call us at 765-464-8080 and we can work with you on determining whether or not it's time to layer services into your loved ones' home to meet their needs and let them retire at home with dignity and independence.