For most children, the decision to help their aging parents move out of their home and relocate to a senior assisted living facility is usually a difficult one, both practically and emotionally. Nevertheless, the decision is a smart one as it’s intended to keep the senior safe and well taken care of. But how can you tell that circumstances imply that it’s time for your loved one to consider assisted living? Well, the following are the signs to watch out for:
- Bodily Signs
- Obvious Weight Loss: Is your loved one looking thinner? If so, it could be that he/she is suffering from depression or from a serious health condition that suppresses appetite. Another possibility is that he/she may be having trouble going out shopping. Also, he/she may be losing their ability to cook.
- Obvious Weight Gain: If your loved one is gaining weight fast, he/she could be suffering from dementia. People with this condition are forgetful, so they tend to forget having eaten, so they can overindulge in meals and snacks.
- Frailty: Certain signs can suggest that your loved one is frail, such as having difficulties rising from a chair, or being unsteady or unable to balance when standing.
- Unkempt Appearance: If you’ve known your parent to be clean and neat all your life, and then you notice that lately he/she has shaggy hair, unclean clothes, unbuttoned shirts, non-ironed clothes, etc, you should interpret this as a red flag.
- Body Odor: Changes in personal hygiene can occur as one loses his/her inability to bathe, use the toilet or change clothes.
If you notice any of the above physical signs or changes, you should talk to your aging parent about the benefits of living in one of the senior assisted living facilities near you. At Heidi’s Haven Residential Assisted Living Facilities, we take care of seniors who have lost the ability to take good care of themselves. Our staff helps with routine tasks such as bathing, toileting, dressing, eating, getting by, and any other assistance your loved one may need.
- Social Signs
- Inactive Friendships: If friends have moved away or passed on, your loved one may become lonely. Lack of companionship is linked to stress, depression, and heart problems in seniors.
- Cutting Back on Hobbies: If your loved one no longer engages in activities that he/she used to love and doesn’t show any interest in any more, this is a sign of depression.
- Staying Indoors: If your parent has become inactive or immobile, can no longer drive, or is afraid of taking public transportation, he/she may stay indoors for many days. This is not good for their health and social well-being.
If your loved one is exhibiting any of the above social signs, moving him/her to a place where he/she can socialize with other people could be lifesaving. At Heidi’s Haven Residential Assisted Living Facilities, we encourage healthy socialization and interaction. Seniors will no longer feel lonely, as they get to make new friends. Your loved ones can also engage in activities that keep them more mobile and active.
- Home Maintenance Signs
- Lots of Clutter: If there’s a lot of clutter lying around, it could be that your loved one has lost the ability to throw things away. This can be a sign of physical or neurological issue.
- Lax Housekeeping: Cobwebs, thick dust, spills, and mold are all signs of slackness. If your loved one can’t tidy up the house, this is a sign that they may need help.
- Dead Plants: If you notice that plants are dead or dying, this is a serious sign, especially if your parent is a plant-lover.
- Unattended Pets: If your parent is a pet lover and you notice that his/her pets are poorly groomed or underfed, this is a sign that it’s time for assisted living.
- Lax Maintenance: Obvious signs of neglect include dirty or broken windows, discolored ceilings or walls, leaking pipes or faucets, gutters chocked with leaves, etc. If your parent can no longer carry out simple maintenance tasks, they may need assistance.
In addition to the aforementioned signs, the primary caregiver’s exhaustion can be a good indicator of a decline in your loved one’s ability to care for themselves. If your loved one’s need for care is wearing you or the caregiver out, this could be a major sign that it is time to start looking at other care options.
At Heidi’s Haven Residential Assisted Living Facilities, we will be more than happy to take the weight of caring for your loved one off your shoulders. This will not only give you peace of mind knowing that your loved one is getting the best possible care, but it will also allow you to focus on other important things.