So you recently visited your mom or dad and noticed a few things weren’t quite right. Perhaps it was the empty fridge or unpaid bills lying on the table or the unusually excessive pile of dirty laundry or maybe it was the fact that they haven’t had a bath in months. Whatever the case, you no doubt left thinking “ok, I think it is time to hire a caregiver for mom and dad!”.
So what are the signs? Here are 12 tell-tale signs you may notice from your loved one:
- Becomes lost when driving in familiar areas but still insists on driving.
- Forgets to pay bills, something he or she was managing pretty well.
- Not recognizing the need to schedule necessary repairs around the house.
- Forgets or not recognizing the need to pick up mail.
- The trash is not disposed of.
- Not seeing the need to cook meals or misses to eat their meals. Outdated food is left in the refrigerator or in the cabinets for too long.
- Forgetting or not realizing the need to take care of personal hygiene such as wearing the same clothes daily, urine odor or poor oral hygiene.
- Forgetting to take medications and sometimes missing doses or overdosing by mistake. At times they call you to ask which medication they are supposed to take.
- Complete lack of interest in doing laundry or keeping the house clean.
- Has had a few falls and is unsteady on his/her feet. Going up the stairs becomes very difficult.
- Likes to sleep for long periods of time and is no longer interested in visiting friends and family or running usual errands or just reluctant to leave the house.
- Sometimes you notice the stove is left turned on and they do not exhibit the appropriate response for emergency situations.
You can start by actively looking for the signs. The danger with being passive is that the care that is eventually put in place (after a fall or hospitalization) may be done in a rush and has the potential of triggering a downward spiral on their health based on many different factors. Finding the right caregiver for any care need is vital in the healing process.