Visiting Your Parents This Holiday Season? Take the Opportunity to Check on Their Health

January 3, 2018

It is not always easy to see the changes to mental or physical well-being of an elderly parent. For some people, looking for signs of change due aging is very difficult to do.

Our parents hold a special place in our hearts, so actively looking for signs that they aren’t in the best health is understandably a painful process. Therefore, it’s common to overlook something because it is much easier to avoid the idea of a loved one suffering from serious health problems.

In many cases, adult children living nearby to an elderly parent fail to notice changes in their health because it’s a slow, gradual process. Not all the signs of aging appear instantly, making it difficult to determine some issues over long periods.

For many people in these situations, it falls to siblings that live further away to raise concern over a parent’s health. When seeing someone infrequently, changes to their mental or physical health can be more noticeable, which is why so many children visiting over the holidays may see something is amiss.

In fact, the holidays are often the only time many families come together, leading many children to notice their parent’s health isn’t what it was. If you are visiting an elderly parent or family member this holiday season, it is always worth checking up on their general condition.

Should you notice something that concerns you, it is important to remain calm and think about your options going forward, such as considering home health care.

Be sure to look out for any of the following signs when visiting an elderly loved one this holiday season:

Is their home as clean as it could be?

One of the more obvious signs that an elderly person is struggling at home is the general cleanliness of their home. Look for things like mold, insects, mildew, and other signs of an unkept house – its usually a sign something is wrong. Check the fridge if possible, as rotting food leftovers is another common sign of problems.

How is their personal hygiene?

Another common sign of health problems is issues with personal hygiene. This could stem from not being physically able to wash themselves, leading to a lack of personal cleanliness that should be quite noticeable.

Are they taking all their medications?

If your loved one hasn’t been taking all their medication recently, then there may be something wrong. Check to see if they are taking all the medications they should, as well as keeping an eye out on their prescriptions in general.

Many elderly people can misread or misuse prescriptions, so always be sure to check all their medications are being taken as they should.

How forgetful are they?

One of the more obvious warning signs regarding an elderly person’s mental health is forgetfulness. However, this doesn’t mean that something is wrong, as many old people get forgetful with age or from certain medications.

Rather than the odd bout of forgetfulness, look for more frequent signs. If they are constantly being forgetful and struggling to remember much, it could be more serious, such as an early onset of dementia or Alzheimer’s.

Reach Out to a Professional If Necessary

If you happen to notice any of the above, it may be worth getting their health checked by a medial professional.

Senior home care is one of the many options available for aging parents, offering quality care services from the comfort of their home for as long as possible. Caregivers visit them as much as needed, helping with many different things from cleaning, cooking, arranging doctor’s appointments, and ensure no accidents occur at home.

Completely non-invasive, it allows elderly people to live as independently as possible for as long as possible.

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