Sometimes change is for the better
As parents age, adult children often assume the role of caregiver. It’s a transition that can be emotionally and physically difficult on parent and adult child alike. Our parents may be frustrated by a loss of independence, while we struggle to balance life’s responsibilities with our heartfelt desire to care for them.
Eventually, you may begin to realize that quality of life for both you and your parent could be enhanced by a change. But there are many factors when considering whether it’s time for a parent to move to a continuing care retirement community such as Baptist Homes.
Your first and foremost consideration should be your parent’s health and safety. We have provided a short checklist that can be used as a tool to monitor your loved one’s capabilities as they go about their activities of daily living (ADLs), their Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADLs) as well as their cognitive abilities. By knowing what to look for, you can alert your parent’s physician before problems arise.
Caregiver Quality of Life Checklist
Activities of Daily Living (ADLs)
- Do you notice a change in personal hygiene?
- Does there seem to be a change in weight?
- Does he or she appear unsteady when getting up or down from a chair?
- Are there any indications of incontinence on the part of your family member (e.g., an odor of urine in the apartment or home)?
Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADLs)
- Is there a change in tidiness or cleanliness in the home?
- Is dirty laundry piling up?
- Is mail stacked on tables or desks? Are bills unopened?
- Are there smells from spoiling food or garbage?
- Is there enough food in the refrigerator and cupboards? Is it fresh or has it gone bad?
- Does your family member have problems using simple tools (telephone, stove, remote control, thermostat, etc.)?
Cognitive or emotional situations
- Does he or she seem to be increasingly forgetful?
- Are the shades drawn and is the house dark when you arrive?
- Has your family member lessened his or her contact with family and friends?
- Does your family member appear withdrawn?
- Has he or she missed appointments or gotten lost in familiar places?
- Do there appear to be any safety risks, e.g., burnt pots in the cabinet or evidence that medications are not being taken properly?
- If your family member still drives, are they driving safely? (Take a ride with him or her. Do they get lost, confused, or make poor decisions?)
If you checked any of these questions, bring the concerns to your family member’s physician.
Luckily, there are resources to guide you through the process of determining what’s best for your loved one.
If you decide that Baptist Homes is right for your parent, we promise that he or she will be offered the highest level of physical, emotional and spiritual care, while you’ll enjoy the peace of mind knowing that skilled, compassionate professionals are providing it. To schedule a tour of Baptist Homes, call 412-563-6550, or complete our short contact form.