Thinking of our parents as seniors can be difficult for adult children. Many parents care for their children throughout their lives. Adjusting to a reversal in roles can be a process to work through, especially as every parent ages differently. As our parents get older, it is essential to consider how to care for them and help them meet their needs. More adult children than ever are acting as the primary caretakers for their elderly parents. Managing the welfare of aging parents takes planning, research, and time.
Recognize the Challenges Your Elderly Parents Face
Many of us would rather brush over the challenges our elderly parents face. Perhaps we don’t want to admit to ourselves that our parents are becoming older and frail. Taking the time to evaluate your elderly parents’ struggles honestly can help both you and your parents. Sit down and make a list of the daily activities with which your elderly parents struggle the most. As people age, they often struggle with the following types of daily activities:
- Using a telephone
- Managing medication
- Paying bills and managing finances
- Using public transportation to get to appointments
- Personal hygiene
- Grocery shopping
Create a Care Plan for Your Elderly Parents
After identifying the areas in which your elderly parents need assistance, you may benefit from creating a care plan. By creating a caregiver plan, you will remove uncertainty among older adults and family members. Many adult siblings live in different geographic locations. Or, in other cases, none of the adult children of an aging individual live nearby. These challenges could make providing care for an elderly parent difficult. A well-written care plan can help each sibling or caretaker understand his or her responsibilities.
Creating a care plan also helps reduce uncertainty and help people avoid scrambling in last-minute situations. When families have written out a care plan ahead of time, they will all understand what will happen in an emergency. For example, if an elderly loved one suffers a severe fall and needs full-time nursing care, the care plan will include a strategy for helping your loved one.
Thorough care plans will also include helpful checklists. Checklists can also help people on the caregiving team locate essential documents and information. More broadly, a care plan should consist of details about elderly adult’s food preferences, daily schedules, health care providers, medication regimens, and any other important caretaking information.
Plan for Long-Term Care Costs
Long-term care costs are prohibitive. Many Southeastern Massachusetts families are unable to pay for the costs of long-term care, which average over $10,000 per month per person. Some children of aging parents can live with their parents and provide care. When an elderly loved one suffers a serious health care issue that requires full-time care, living with an aging parent may not be possible.
Taking the time to plan for paying for long-term care is always a good idea, even if your aging parents are in good health and independent. Many of our clients come to our law offices after their loved one suffers a medical emergency. These families need to place their loved ones in a nursing home quickly, but they are concerned about how to pay the first month’s nursing home bill. Whether you need help with nursing home care planning urgently, or you’d like to create a proactive plan, our legal team can help.
Contact Our Elder Law Lawyers
At Surprenant & Beneski, PC, two of our skilled lawyers are Certified Elder Law Attorneys. We have helped many families plan for caring for elderly relatives. Our legal team can help you develop a care plan for your aging parents. We can also help you engage in long-term care planning. After listening to the needs of your family, we will help you create a comprehensive plan. Contact our Southeastern Massachusetts elder law firm today to schedule your initial consultation.