elderly woman being walked by daughter

When the Signs of Aging Require Action

Preparing for aging is a complex and variable task, whether you are thinking of yourself, your spouse, your partner, or your parents. At Surprenant & Beneski, P.C., our elder care attorneys help clients in Southeastern Massachusetts take steps to make the changes that accompany aging easier to navigate. 

Recognizing the Signs of Aging That Require Action

Hopefully, your loved ones will have many golden years full of relaxation, enjoyment, travel, and grandchildren. Nonetheless, as you observe those closest to you getting older, you will want to help them make changes to keep them safe and comfortable. A good way to approach this is to watch for the inevitable signs that incremental changes have to be made. 

The more you treat such changes as expected, the more you assist your loved ones in easing into necessary alterations to their routine without pressure and without fear.

Services Surprenant & Beneski Offers

There are many indicators that someone close to you needs some kind of assistance going forward because of the limitations that come with age. As elder law attorneys, we can be helpful in discussing, arranging for, and preparing to finance the actions that must be taken. 

We are experienced and skilled in drafting trusts that can preserve eligibility for Medicaid (Mass Health) in the future and have resources about where to find services to help your loved one continue to have a rich and fulfilling life. 

Signs That Action Needs to Be Taken

As the concerned spouse or adult child of an elderly person, you should be on the look-out for any of the following:

  • Problems with mobility, eyesight, and balance (such as a fall) indicate the individual’s home has to be age-proofed (e.g. have slippery scatter rugs removed and necessary items moved to lower shelves). Such difficulties may also warrant the older person’s use of an assistive device like a cane or a walker.
  • Noticeably poor personal hygiene may indicate difficulty bathing and may require a safety bar and/or seat in the shower or transportation to the barber or hairdresser. You should also check whether your loved one is having any problems with incontinence and if so, handle this as matter-of-factly as possible.
  • Financial problems like overdrawn checking accounts, unpaid bills, and undeposited checks, are usually evidence that your loved one needs help handling their banking and investments. If you have to take over their financial matters, our attorneys can help you, for example, open joint accounts.
  • Cognitive or mental health problems, involving extreme confusion, disorientation, severe memory loss, atypical angry outbursts, and refusal or inability to communicate — all require a medical/psychiatric check-up. If your loved one is diagnosed with dementia, we can assist you in planning for their most comfortable future.
  • Weight loss may indicate a lack of proper nourishment. Your loved one may need help with shopping and/or meal preparation, e.g. food deliveries, Meals on Wheels.
  • Physical decline (e.g. increased pain, fatigue, tremors, difficulty sleeping) indicates that a medical check-up is in order. There may be a need for more exercise, physical therapy, a change in medications, or some other intervention.
  • Difficulty driving, cleaning, or gardening will at some point require outside services or perhaps eventual relocation to a more manageable environment, but remember — one step at a time. Your loved one may need a house cleaner or an Uber driver well before they require nursing care or assisted living. 

No matter what sign of aging your loved one is showing, that sign is a wake-up call. Our skilled lawyers will draft the essential documents you will need in case of an emergency, such as a durable power of attorney, a health care proxy, and a HIPAA form.

Contact Our Experienced Elder Care Attorneys Today

The lead attorneys at Surprenant & Beneski are 2 of the 24 Certified Elder Law Attorneys (CELAs) in the state. They understand the difficulties of aging and have estate planning tools and techniques to cope with them. Contact us soon for efficient, empathic assistance and advice.