You might not realize it, but your senior could be hiding some things from you. If your aging family member is afraid of accepting help from you or from elder care providers, she may go to extra effort to keep some of these details under wraps. Here’s what you need to look for to determine if she might need more help.
Her Home Is Not in Great Shape
How does your senior’s home look? If you’re not sure because she won’t let you in, that’s something that you need to address. Assuming that you are able to visit inside her home, take a look around. Piles of mail, signs that she’s having trouble cleaning, or unsafe areas are all big red flags that mean you need to take some action and ensure that she is safe.
Her Appearance Is Off a Bit
When your elderly family member is having a tough time keeping up with everything that she needs to do, she might start to make some small changes. For instance, you might notice that she’s wearing the same clothes every time you see her. Or she might be wearing brand-new clothing every time you see her. These small changes can be big indications that there’s more going on behind the scenes.
She’s Forgetting Important Tasks
Are you hearing that your senior is forgetting about appointments? Or is it possible that she’s forgetting things like her medications? Everybody can be forgetful now and again, but these types of issues can add up to trouble quickly for your senior and might mean that she needs help from elder care providers sooner rather than later.
You’re Worried She’s Not Eating Well
Food is another area that can tell you a lot about how your elderly family member is really doing. If she’s losing weight without trying or is getting sick more often, she might not be eating well at all. It’s important to understand what is happening so that you can help her to find a solution. This can be as simple to resolve as hiring home care providers to do the cooking for your senior.
Her Car Is Showing Signs of Trouble
Your senior may be especially protective of issues around independence, like maintaining her ability to keep driving. But that might not be safe for her to do anymore. Instead of telling you that, you may find that your senior continues to drive. Look for signs of trouble on the car itself, like scratches, scuffs, or dings. These indications let you know that it might be time to have someone else, like elder care providers, doing the driving instead of your senior.
A lot of these decisions your senior may be making come back to not wanting to lose independence and dignity. What helps is to let her know that you want to preserve both as much as you can for her and allow her to keep living her life on her terms. But that might mean that she needs to accept some help.