Last Updated: November 19, 2019
The holidays are a wonderful time of year for fun, cheer and family gatherings. Between Thanksgiving and New Year’s, great meals will be shared, gifts will be exchanged, and loved ones will be reunited.
Amidst all these glad tidings, some families may learn that their loved one needs long term senior care. To avoid an unexpected downside to your holiday season, learn more about what to do in this situation.
It’s the holiday season, and it can be difficult to discover that your parents or senior loved ones may now be in need of long term senior care. The need for personal care and support can sneak up on a family. After having been apart for some time, it can become suddenly apparent that it is no longer safe for someone you care about to live alone. If this happens to you, you must assess your loved one’s ability to live independently. Complete a safety and well-being check and consider creating a blueprint for a family action plan this holiday season.1
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Over the holidays look out for the following signs that long term care for seniors is necessary:
If these signs are being recognized by the family, it is time to discuss an action plan for a senior loved one. Start by first coming together as a family to get on the same page. Discuss what actions need to be taken. Taking action does not mean moving someone straight into senior living. There are many levels of care and many aspects involved that the family will want to work on together.
There are several long term care options to consider. An in-home caregiver can allow your loved one to stay in their home. You can hire help for particular issues the senior has such as making meals or cleaning the house. If your loved one has minimal medical care needs but needs assistance performing basic ADLs, an assisted living facility, residential care home, or a continuing care retirement community can be a good option. Individuals diagnosed with dementia may do well in a memory care facility. If your loved one has extensive health care needs, he or she may benefit from the many long term care services offered at a skilled nursing facility.
No matter what option you discuss, you should remove any negative stigma by emphasizing the positives about moving forward in this direction. For instance, at a long term care facility there are many social activities, dining options and special events that the seniors can participate in. This often gives older adults a way to make new friends.
If you see any of the listed warning signs this holiday season, be sure to discuss as a family a plan to act. Don’t ignore this subject because it is uncomfortable or unfamiliar. Use the time together as a family to bestow on your elderly loved ones possibly the greatest gifts of all – health, safety, and happiness!
About the Author
Chris Orestis, CEO of Life Care Funding, is an 18-year veteran of both the insurance and long-term care industries. A nationally known senior care advocate; he is the author of the Amazon best-seller book “Help on the Way.” He is a legislative expert, featured speaker, columnist, and contributor to a number of insurance and long-term care industry publications. Chris is a frequent guest about senior issues on national radio programs and has also been featured in the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, USA Today, Woman’s World Magazine, Fox Business News and PBS.
A former life insurance industry lobbyist with a background in long-term care issues, he created the model to provide a funding option for middle-class people who are not wealthy enough to pay for long-term care, and not poor enough to qualify for Medicaid. Follow his blog on senior living issues and reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
1Anderson, J. (2019, June 20). The Ultimate Senior Safety and Well-Being Checklist. Retrieved from https://www.aplaceformom.com/blog/12-5-2013-ultimate-senior-safety-well-being-checklist/.
2Fowler, K. (2019, June 19). ADLs and IADLs. Retrieved from https://www.aplaceformom.com/blog/adls-and-iadls/.
3Normal aging vs dementia. (n.d.). Retrieved November 14, 2019, from https://alzheimer.ca/en/Home/About-dementia/What-is-dementia/Normal-aging-vs-dementia.
4Institute. (2017, December 4). What Is the Average Age Seniors Stop Driving? Factors in Determining Older Driver Safety. Retrieved November 14, 2019, from https://blog.ioaging.org/aging/what-is-the-average-age-seniors-stop-driving-factors-in-determining-older-driver-safety/.
5Kernisan, L., & Griffin, A. (2018, November 2). 5 Things to Know about Aging & Financial Decline. Retrieved November 14, 2019, from https://betterhealthwhileaging.net/5-things-to-know-aging-financial-decline/.