Finally, it is the holiday season, and you can head back home to see your senior parents for the first time in a while. You’re looking forward to their smiling faces, the warm, cozy house, and the smell of home-baked cookies. As you walk in the house though, you notice things aren’t exactly as tidy as usual. And then, you notice that Dad is having some trouble getting up the stairs. Even more concerning, there are piles of unopened bills on the table and you see Mom’s pill organizer on the counter with yesterday’s medication still inside.

The reality is, even though going home for the holidays is an exciting time to spend with your aging loved ones, it can also be a shock to see that certain daily tasks have gotten more difficult for them as they’ve aged a little more throughout the year. The household tasks that they were once able to do without even thinking about them, now might require a little extra help. Eventually you start to notice all the signs that professional home care is needed.

This is a common occurrence during the holidays, and while it is concerning, recognizing the signs that home care is needed is the first step towards a solution that will keep loved ones safe at home while maintaining their independence.

What are the signs?

Aging looks different for everyone, so it’s important to be especially perceptive to some of the specific things that have changed since the last time you saw the aging adult. Here are some common signs that professional home care is needed:

  • Their home or personal care seems to be falling behind – Take note of how they are keeping up with daily routines such as bathing, brushing their teeth, or household chores like washing dishes or taking out the trash. Any changes in these could indicate that they’ve been having more trouble completing the tasks than normal and could be a sign they need help.
  • Trouble with memory – If you’re noticing that the elders ask you the same question multiple times, or maybe they walk into a room and often get confused about what they were trying to do, these could be signs that their memory is fading a bit, causing a need      to be assessed by a physician.
  • A significant decline in mobility – Of course, no one is going to stay as agile as they were 20 years ago, but if you notice an aging loved one struggling with going up the stairs or handling loads of laundry, that may be cause for concern.

Signs that home care is needed can also include experiencing more trouble behind the wheel when driving, a decrease in social life, noticeably low spirits or a melancholy disposition, or weight loss. 

If you’re noticing any of these signs, first, have a conversation with the aging loved ones in a respectful and calm manner to express your concerns. Then, offer to help in the ways you can, but also bring up the option of professional home care services, which can be a huge help when you are unavailable     to lend a hand. 

How can professional home care help?

If the elders you love are displaying any of these common signs that home care is needed,      Home Care Assistance of Raleigh can help!

Home care services from a professional agency like Home Care Assistance can help offer a hand around the house, help facilitate social engagements, prepare meals, provide medication reminders, and much more.  While introducing the idea of professional home care to your loved ones can be a difficult conversation, discussing the options sooner rather than after a health emergency occurs can ensure that the elders you love are able to age safely, comfortably, and as independently as possible at home.

At Home Care Assistance, we ensure that our home care services are tailored to every individual, prioritizing their independence. We like to say we don’t take over life at home, we simply lend assistance where and when it’s needed. Home Care Assistance offers aging adults the freedom to continue living their lives to the fullest while having extra support for things that have gotten more difficult as they’ve aged.

If you’d like to hear more about how Home Care Assistance can help, contact us online or at 919-436-1871 for more information! We offer home care services, including memory care, in Raleigh, NC and the surrounding areas that help seniors stay safe as they age at home, and we’d be happy to discuss how we can do that for the aging adults you love.