One of the hardest things you can do is to move senior family members to an assisted living facility. Even if your elderly parents may still look healthy and fit and can move independently, their age will still prevent them from doing certain things correctly and safely.
Healthcare experts that provide quality assisted living and home care in Dubai say that there are some signs that may indicate the need to move a senior loved one to such facilities. These signs include:
1. Noticeable bruises
If you frequently see bruises on different parts of an elderly loved one’s body, this means that he or she slips and falls repeatedly or bumps into hard objects such as the edge of a table, doors, etc.
These accidents usually happen when the elderly parents have difficulties concentrating and misjudging their distance from certain objects. A senior loved one can often easily fall, trip or slip without another person’s assistance when going up or down the stairs or even simply walking around.
2. Weight loss
Your senior loved ones may be saying that they are eating regularly. However, you notice that they seem to be thinner than the last time you saw them. This weight loss may be attributed to their inability to go food shopping, order food, or even go to a restaurant.
Another possible (and more worrying) reason is that your parent may be forgetting to eat since there are some spoiled foods in the kitchen.
3. No changes in their medicine stock
If you check your elderly family members’ stock of prescribed drugs and there are still a lot of their daily or maintenance medications, chances are, they are forgetting to take their medication.
Although some degree of memory loss and decline in other thinking skills are understandable and acceptable, a senior person’s inability to take daily medication due to forgetfulness can have severe and dreadful consequences.
If your elderly parents can’t always remember if they have taken their regular medicines or supplements, it would be best to move them to an assisted living facility.
4. Changes in their appearance
Aside from drastic weight loss, there will be changes in your elderly parents’ physical appearance that require immediate and appropriate action on your part. These include:
- Unwashed hair and/or unkempt beard
- Lack of or poor application of makeup
- Body odor
- Regularly wearing dirty or soiled clothes or the same outfits repeatedly
5. Difficulty doing and completing some tasks
Your elderly parents’ changes in appearance will often stem from their difficulty in doing certain activities. Due to your parents’ ages, simple tasks which they always did properly before such as gardening, cleaning the home, cooking, shopping, and even doing the laundry will now be harder. Even taking a bath can become difficult for them as well.
If they need help in doing these tasks, an assisted living facility will have trained healthcare providers who will assist them with these activities. They even provide assistance with intimate hygiene activities such as showering and using the bathroom.
6. Navigating and driving difficulties
If senior individuals keep getting lost when going to the mall, the park, or even on their way home after a walk around the neighborhood, these could be signs of possible dementia.
Other signs also include being involved in several car accidents due to a lapse in attention or sudden disorientation while driving.
Aside from bringing your elderly family members to a medical expert immediately, you can also consider a move to an assisted facility so that they won’t hurt themselves and become a danger to other people.
7. Reduced socialization
Most elderly individuals choose to isolate themselves after the death of a family member or close friend who were around the same age. In case you observe your senior loved ones withdrawing from social relationships and friendships, there is a possibility that they may already be suffering from bouts of depression or a neuropsychiatric disorder.
If they used to be socially active and suddenly become withdrawn and disinterested in joining weekly family dinners or even meeting their friends for coffee, it may be a sign of other challenges as well.
In such instances, it is best to have the seniors live in a home with like-minded people of their age. They will enjoy the companionship and this will have positive effects on their mental and emotional health.
8. The onset of Sundowner’s Syndrome
Sundowning is a behavior typically but not exclusively observed in patients with Alzheimer’s disease wherein they act differently after sundown. This symptom can sometimes be manifested by elderly patients without dementia. Symptoms of Sundowner’s Syndrome include being confused, disoriented, restless, and more easily irritable than usual. These are behaviors that families will find hard to accept and deal with. They can sometimes become disruptive to regular activities at home as well.
Healthcare providers at an assisted living home are trained and capable of dealing with and taking care of elderly patients who have emotional and behavioral ups and downs. Aside from helping them go about their activities of daily living correctly and safely, your senior loved ones will have quick and easy access to additional medical and health services they need. They will enjoy the activities and companionship an assisted living facility will provide as well.
Ibrahim Khader founded Angels of Medical Care in 2010. The name “Angels” was chosen because of his belief that nurses are angels of healing and care with the blessings of the creator. The company has flourished and is now one of the best, most renowned home care companies in Dubai.