Taking care of elderly parents from a distance can seem daunting, especially if you live in a different state from your parents. You may feel helpless, worried, and anxious about their wellbeing, especially when you can't be physically present to take care of them. However, there are ways to provide your aging parents with the care and support they need, even when you're not close by. In this blog post, we'll provide you with some helpful advice on taking care of your elderly parents from a distance.
1. Communicate regularly
Communication is key when it comes to taking care of your parents from a distance. You need to stay in touch with your parents and make sure they feel connected to you. Regular phone calls, video chats, and emails can help bridge the physical distance and make your parents feel loved and cared for. It's important to establish a routine with your parents so they know when to expect your calls and feel less isolated.
2. Get to know their healthcare providers
One of the biggest concerns when it comes to elderly parents is their health and wellbeing. It's important to get to know their healthcare providers, including their primary care doctor, specialists, and any home health aides they may have. Keep important medical documents and information, such as medication lists and allergy information, organized and readily available. Consider hiring a geriatric care manager to help coordinate your parents' medical care and ensure they receive the best possible care.
3. Help with household tasks
As your parents age, everyday tasks that were once easy may become more challenging. They may need help with household chores such as cleaning, laundry, grocery shopping, and meal preparation. Consider hiring a professional caregiver or housekeeper to help with these tasks, or arrange for a meal delivery service to provide your parents with healthy and nutritious meals.
4. Plan visits ahead of time
Although you may not be able to visit your parents as often as you would like, it's important to plan visits ahead of time. Try to make arrangements for a visit at least once a year, if possible. This will give you an opportunity to assess their living situation, catch up on any medical issues, and make any necessary arrangements for their care. If you can't visit in person, consider hiring a local friend or family member to check in on your parents and provide you with updates.
5. Stay organized
Finally, staying organized is key when it comes to taking care of your parents from a distance. Keep a folder with all important documents and information related to their health, finances, and legal affairs. This will make it easier for you to stay informed and make decisions when necessary. Consider using a calendar or planner to keep track of appointments and important events, and set reminders for yourself to make phone calls or send emails.
Taking care of your elderly parents from a distance can be challenging, but with some planning and organization, it's possible to provide them with the care and support they need. Communication, getting to know their healthcare providers, helping with household tasks, planning visits ahead of time, and staying organized are all important steps in caring for your aging parents. Remember to be patient, stay positive, and enjoy the time you have with your parents, whether in person or from a distance.