Did you know that you are among 66 million Americans who provide care for a senior loved one? Every day Family Caregivers like you give their time and compassion to their loved ones so that they can continue living in the comfort of their own as they continue to age.
But did you know that physical comfort and safety are not the only things your loved ones feel are important? Studies have shown that more seniors report feeling emotionally satisfied when they have a sense of control in their lives.
Having the feeling that they are able to live independently is important for many reasons. Their independence is oftentimes the only way your loved one can gain a sense of control in their daily lives. Additionally, maintaining their independence will likely give your loved one a sense of achievement that generates a great sense of self-confidence and emotional well-being.
Why is emotional well-being important for your loved one? According to the Geriatric Mental Health Foundation, lack of emotional well-being can lead to depression, which is a serious mental illness that unfortunately affects 15 out of every 100 adults over the age of 65 in the United States.
Are there ways that you can give your loved one a sense of control while still ensuring their safety while they live at home? The reassuring answer is yes, and here are some of the things to keep in mind to help you.
First, allow your loved one to play an active role in their care. When assisting them with daily living, experts recommend a technique called interactive caregiving. This means you play an active role in their care but they essentially perform the chores on their own. Encourage them to perform their grooming rituals, bathing and other chores like making their bed as independently as possible and offer your assistance upon their request. This keeps you involved and your loved one empowered.
Another way to encourage control is to let your loved one schedule events and hobbies that interest them. Encourage social get-togethers, walks, dining with others and attending family events as much as possible. Simply knowing they can make plans and knowing they will have your help with transportation will give them a great sense of control without the anxiety that can accompany social plans.
Don’t let the responsibilities of the Family Caregiver role overwhelm you. While many of these new tasks can seem stressful, they can actually serve as another way for you to connect with your loved one for positive interactions. When you get stuck or have questions, we can help. For assistance in transportation, personal care, medication management or just to answer a couple of questions, contact the health care professionals at Freudenthal Home Health today.