As a new family caregiver, you probably have hundreds of questions running through your head. Here’s a quick look at eight common questions many people would like to ask when they first tackle their caregiving duties.
1. Do I Need Any Special Training?
Family caregivers aren’t legally required to undergo any formal training, but you should still try to learn as much as possible about geriatric care. Many hospitals offer free or affordable training to family caregivers who would like to learn about issues such as medication management or what to do in emergency situations.
2. How Can I Ask Family Members for Help?
You’re going to need a strong support team by your side if you want to preserve your health in the coming years. If your family members aren’t offering to help, sit down with them and explain the situation. Your family might not be offering to help simply because they don’t want to step on your toes.
3. Is My Loved One Eligible to Receive Financial Assistance?
Your aging loved one’s finances could be stretched thin in the coming years, which is why you should take a look at some assistance programs. The National Council on Aging funds an organization called BenefitsCheckUp that allows you to see which programs your loved one might benefit from. Those programs can help you cover a wide array of expenses ranging from housing to prescription medications.
4. What Physical Changes Should I Keep an Eye Out For?
Always keep an eye out for any sudden changes to your loved one’s physical health and wellbeing. You should schedule a checkup with the doctor if your loved one is unusually lethargic or no longer interested in eating. Head to the emergency room if he or she complains of pain in the chest, arms, neck, or head.
Caring for a loved one after a serious health issue arises may be more of a challenge than you can handle alone. If you’re the primary family caregiver for a senior loved one living in Rockwall, live-in care is available if your loved one’s health has become too difficult to manage without professional expertise. At Home Care Assistance, we take measures to help seniors prevent illness and injury by assisting with exercise and mobility, preparing nutritious meals, helping with bathing and other personal hygiene tasks, and much more.
5. What Mental Changes Should I Watch For?
Cognitive decline is another natural part of the aging process, but those changes should be gradual. Sudden memory loss and severe mood swings are often caused by major cardiac events that must be treated immediately. If your loved one’s cognitive skills seem to be decreasing quickly, schedule an appointment with a neurologist.
6. How Often Should My Loved One See the Doctor?
As a general rule, healthy seniors should visit their primary doctor at least once a year. During those checkups, the doctor can look for any early warning signs of serious health conditions. Seniors also need to see an eye doctor and dentist at least once or twice a year.
7. Why Do I Need Respite Care?
Respite care will provide you with temporary relief from your duties so you can focus on yourself. Family caregivers who take regular breaks from their day-to-day activities are able to provide much better care.
If you’re the primary caregiver for a senior loved one in Rockwall, respite care is available when you need time away from your important caregiving duties. At Home Care Assistance, our respite caregivers are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to help your loved one manage everyday tasks in the comfort of home while you have the chance to take a much-needed break.
8. How Can I Maintain My Relationship with My Loved One?
Maintaining a relationship with someone you’re caring for is no easy task, which means you’ll need to put in some work. Setting aside time for leisurely activities you both enjoy can strengthen your relationship and help you avoid arguments. You also need to set aside time for yourself.
Caring for a senior loved one can be challenging for families who don’t have expertise or professional training in home care, but this challenge doesn’t have to be faced alone. Family caregivers can turn to Rockwall Home Care Assistance for the help they need. We provide high-quality live-in and respite care as well as comprehensive Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care. If you need professional care for your senior loved one, Home Care Assistance is just a phone call away. Reach out to one of our Care Managers today at (972) 722-7833.